Senior tribal journalist injured in Landikotal ambush
By Sudhir Ahmad Afridi
LANDIKOTAL: Unidentified men ambushed a senior tribal journalist and former Khyber Agency Tribal Union of Journalists president Khalil Khan Afridi on Wednesday night.
The journalist was returning home from a nearby hujra (guest house) at 9pm when he was targeted with a hand grenade that severely injured him. Locals rushed him to the Landikotal Hospital where doctors treated Afridi.
Some of the locals were of the view that Afridi was targeted with an explosive device that may already have been planted on the ground near his home while majority of the people said that he was attacked by a hand grenade. However, it was clear that the journalist was the main target of the assailants, as he was alone at the time of the ambush, locals commented.
The attack is an addition to the already unsafe conditions for tribal journalists, who are vulnerable to such attacks at any time, some tribal journalists said by phone.
The FATA Tribal Union of Journalists President Safdar Hayyat Khan Dawar strongly condemning the assault on Afridi and demanded that the government should provide security to the tribal journalists throughout FATA, as he said that they were a soft target for terrorists. He said that the union would not remain silent until something was done about this issue.
Landikotal Press Club President Wali Khan Shinwari also flayed the attack on the journalist and asked the government to hold a thorough inquiry to bring the culprits to justice otherwise the tribal journalists would be compelled to start protesting against the attacks and negligence on part of the government.
A large number of tribal journalists condemned the assault on Afridi.
Separately, an Afghan driver was killed near the Sheikhwal area on the main Pak-Afghan highway and a Khasadar official, identified as Ihsan Ali, son of Abdul Malik, was also shot dead in the same area.
Two conductors were also injured in separate attacks besides the tribal journalist in Landikotal.
Source: Daily Times