Baghdad, 30 October 2017 - The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) condemns the killing of a journalist in Kirkuk Governorate today. UNAMI also condemns the assault against a journalist on Sunday in Erbil that left him injured, as well as intimidation and violence against members of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq Parliament and political offices in the Kurdistan Region.
UNAMI appreciates the stance of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) that appealed to the people to keep calm in the wake of the political developments on Sunday 29 October, to prevent subversive individuals from carrying out destructive actions, warned against any attempt to target the political branch office of any political faction in the region and called on security forces to prevent any plot against the stability of the Kurdistan Region. UNAMI also appreciates the Government of Iraq’s calls for de-escalation and compliance with the law and order in Kurdistan and its keenness on the stability in all the governorates across of Iraq.
The Mission calls on the authorities to investigate the stabbing which resulted in the death of a cameraman working for a Kurdish TV station at his home in Dakuk area in Kirkuk Governorate and bring the perpetrators to justice.
The Mission calls on the authorities to do their utmost to ensure the safety of all citizens, including journalists and politicians, and media outlets.
UNAMI also takes note of the decision by the Iraqi federal authorities to ban the broadcasts of some media outlets in Kurdistan Region.
The Mission believes that at times of crisis a free media becomes even more essential than usually to safeguard the public interest and protect democracy. At the same time, hate speech and incitement to violence based on religion, race or political affiliation, have no place in a democracy.
UNAMI has steadfastly called for de-escalation between the Federal Government in Baghdad and the Kurdistan Regional Government in Erbil, and for negotiations on all the pending issues in a constructive spirit. This spirit includes ending public inflammatory statements and confrontational steps as a matter of priority.
For more information, please contact: Mr. Samir Ghattas, Director of Public Information/Spokesperson
United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq, Phone: +964 790 193 1281, Email: email@example.com@un.org
or the UNAMI Public Information Office: firstname.lastname@example.org@un.org