Afghan journalist survives gunmen attack
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AP) – Gunmen on motorcycles brandished small arms and shot a broadcast journalist in his car in the Afghan capital of Kabul, slightly injuring him.
Ali Reza Sharifi, broadcasting reporter for the Islamic Republic of Iran, survived Friday night’s attack, deputy Taliban spokesman Bilal Karimi told The Associated Press.
“We are investigating to find the perpetrator,” he said. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.
The attack comes just days after an Afghan media watchdog reported more than 30 cases of violence and threats of violence against Afghan journalists in the past two months, nearly 90 percent of which were committed by the Taliban.
Sharifi told the AP he was driving home when two men on motorcycles opened fire on his car. “A bullet fired from the left just hit my lip,” he said, adding that “ragged window pieces hit my left eye.”
Photos of Sharifi’s car shared on social media show at least two bullet holes on one of the car’s windows. “They started pulling from the front and I escaped in the back seat,” he said.
Since the withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan at the end of August, three journalists have been killed in Afghanistan.
Separately, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a series of tweets that unknown gunmen shot at a wedding ceremony in a remote area of eastern Nangarhar province, killing three civilians and injuring several others. Two men were arrested and a third is still at large.
It is not known why the marriage was targeted, but Mujahid said the gunmen attempted to stop the wedding music by citing the Taliban’s name, although they are not officially affiliated with the group.