A broadcast journalist and Chairman of Human Rights Journalist (HRJ) Ismail Shiekh Khalifa was in a stable condition last night following assassination attempt in which an improvised explosive device (VIED) was detonated into his car on Tuesday afternoon around 3:30 PM in Waaberi neighborhood in Mogadishu.
Mr Ismail , a veteran journalist was admitted to Ex Digger hospital and needed surgery according to the medical doctors .
“Together with journalists, relatives and friends of the patient , we were waiting outside the operation theater worrying so much about his health condition . When doctors completed the operation he undergone he was referred to the Intensive Care Unit at the hospital. It was great pleasure to see our colleague Ismail who was conscious and telling us that he is good despite painful injuries“ Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu General Secretary of National Union of Somali Journalist (NUSOJ) said .
“Doctors confirmed us that Ismail’s condition is improving and hoping that he will recover from the injuries sustained on the back and will be treated in hospital until he fully recovers” Moalimuu added.
Aydaruus Mohamed Abdi from Media For Peace who was riding in the car with Ismail at the time of blast attack told NUSOJ that they had together came out from Kalsan TV station where Ismail was producing a TV program .
“Ismail’s car was parked is outside the TV station and as usual Ismail started to drive the car after we got into the car but in few minutes we were hit a heavy blast ,an explosive device donated in the back of Ismail’s seat went off ,all windows of the car opened . I was so terrified and can’t tell you how I jumped out from the car .I found out that Ismail is injured and bleeding heavily that is why I requested for help from nearby neighbors and TV staff “ Aydaruus said .
The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) joins its affiliate and media fraternities for the condemnation of the assassination attempt against Ismail Shiekh Khalifa who advocates for the rights of Somali journalists .
We condemn this shocking attack targeted to our colleague Ismail Shiekh Khalifa as it is another direct attack against the free media in Somalia.We call urgent investigation to all attacks against the media people.” NUSOJ Secretary-General Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu said. “
Somalia is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists. For the past four years, the country has topped CPJ’s impunity index, which spotlights countries where journalists are slain and their killers go free. The 2018 index shows that 25 journalists were murdered with complete impunity between September 1, 2008 and August 31, 2018.
Ismail is a well known journalist who worked hard during the most difficult time and had not fled from Somalia ,so we wish him speedy recovery from his wounds .