Two Iraqi TV reporters killed in Mosul

Two Iraqi TV reporters killed in Mosul

MOSUL - Agence France-Presse
Two Iraqi TV reporters killed in Mosul

An image grab taken on Oct. 5 from Iraq's Sharqiya channel shows file pictures of the television's correspondent Mohammed Karim (L) and his cameraman Mohammed Ghanem as their killing in the northern city of Mosul was announced by the private TV station. AFP photo / Sharqiya

Two journalists with Iraq's Sharqiya television were "assassinated" in the northern city of Mosul on Oct. 5, the channel said.

A police officer and a doctor confirmed that the two men - named by Sharqiya as correspondent Mohammed Karim al-Badrani and cameraman Mohammed Ghanem - were shot dead.

The pair's reports on security forces and officials in Mosul brought death threats from militant groups opposed to the government, a Sharqiya journalist told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Mosul is one of the most dangerous areas in Iraq, with militants frequently carrying out attacks and also reportedly extorting money from shopowners in the city.

Iraq has come in for repeated criticism over shortcomings in media freedom.

"Many Iraqi journalists are routinely exposed to threats, murder attempts, attacks, difficulties obtaining permission, denial of access, confiscation of equipment and so on," media rights watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said earlier this year.

Journalists with the appropriate government permits are routinely barred from approaching the sites of attacks and prevented from otherwise freely reporting in Baghdad.

Photo and video cameras are often viewed with suspicion by security forces.

It is difficult to bring cameras into the capital's heavily-fortified Green Zone, where the government is headquartered, even for official news conferences and events.

Violence has reached a level unseen since 2008, and there are fears Iraq may relapse into the kind of intense Sunni-Shiite bloodshed that peaked in 2006-2007 and killed tens of thousands of people.