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Bangladeshi journalist killed while covering clashes

February 23, 2021

Borhan Uddin Muzakkir was shot and killed while covering fighting between rival factions of the ruling Awami League party.

Pressefreiheit Symbolbild
Image: Getty Images/C. Court

On February 19, Bangladeshi journalist Borhan Uddin Muzakkir, a reporter for the Bangla Samachar daily newspaper and the Bartabazar.com news website, was shot and killed while covering clashes between rival factions of Bangladesh’s ruling Awami League in Companiganj, 200 km southeast of Dhaka. Muzakkir sustained a gunshot injury to the neck. He succumbed to the injuries the following day.

Reporters Without Borders is calling for an independent investigation into the fatal shooting. 

“It is completely unacceptable for Borhan Muzakkir to have been the collateral victim of political tension within the Awami League,” said Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk. “We urge the Companiganj police to make every effort to identify the person or persons responsible for this fatal shooting and bring them to justice." Bastard also called on Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader to "ensure that his party’s activists respect the work of journalists during their meetings.”

Bangladesh is ranked 151 out of 180 countries in RSF's 2020 World Press Freedom Index. Journalists in Bangladesh have also faced severe backlash and harassment for their reporting on the coronavirus crisis.