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Rights Group Worried About Media Freedom In Afghanistan

Afjghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul (file photo) (epa) August 17, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF) media watchdog today said that it is worried about what it called a recent wave of press freedom violations in Afghanistan.

In an open letter posted on the group's website, RSF Secretary-General Robert Menard urges Afghan President Hamid Karzai "to take all necessary measures to protect journalists and their news organizations."

RSF singles out an August 11 attack on the offices of Radio Isteqlal (Radio Independence) in Eastern Logar Province.

It also condemns Afghan legislators who verbally attacked the Tolo private television station on August 14 for broadcasting footage showing parliamentarians asleep during hearings.

RSF also draws Karzai's attention to the case of radio reporter Abdul Qudoos, who was detained and jailed for seven months without charges, and BBC correspondent Kamal Sadaat, who was reportedly assaulted on August 16 in Khost Province.