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Rights Group Urges Iraq To Probe Slaying Of Journalist

Protesters on Baghdad’s Freedom Square rally against corruption and the poor state of public utilities while carrying photos of Iraqi civil activist Hadi al-Mehdi, who had co-organized a number of regular Friday antigovernment protests until he was murder
Human Rights Watch (HRW) is calling on Iraqi authorities to investigate the killing of a journalist who criticized the government and helped organize pro-reform protests.

Journalist Hadi al-Mehdi was shot dead in his Baghdad home on September 8 by assailants using silenced guns. Dozens of people turned out today to mourn Mehdi.

HRW says Mehdi had informed his friends of death threats he had received recently from unknown people.

Mehdi was one of four Iraqi journalists who said they were abducted by Iraqi Army soldiers after an antigovernment demonstration as part of protests across Iraq in February.

He said he was blindfolded, doused with water, and subjected to electric shocks.

Mehdi was known for his sharp critiques of government ineptitude and corruption on his radio show. He also wrote commentaries for several websites and was a playwright.

compiled from agency reports