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At Least 14 Media Workers Killed In Afghanistan Since 2016, Watchdog Says

Relatives and friends gather around the coffin of Afghan reporter Zabihullah Tamanna, who was killed in a Taliban ambush in June 2016.

Afghanistan's independent media watchdog NAI says there have been more than 14 fatal attacks against reporters and other media workers since 2016.

The organization told RFE/RL on May 3 that more than 415 cases of violence -- including murder, harassment, short-term detentions, and torture of journalists and media workers -- were registered over this period.

The organization attributed 326 of the cases to the Taliban and about 63 incidents to the Afghan government.

NAI special reporter Sabir Fahim told RFE/RL in a phone interview from Kabul that the amount of violence against media workers in Afghanistan tripled in 2016 and has since then been on the rise.

He said several reporters were forced to leave areas that had fallen into the hands of the Taliban in the last year.

NAI says at least 10 radio and television channels have been forced to close in the past three years, due to a lack of financial support.

Afghanistan is 12th on the Committee to Protect Journalists' list of deadliest countries for journalists.