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Human Services

Female Iraqi Journalist Abducted by Gunmen in Baghdad

A female Iraqi journalist has been abducted in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, by armed men who burst into her home under the guise of members of security forces.

Head of Iraq's Journalistic Freedoms Observatory Ziad al-Ajili said on Tuesday that Afrah Shawqi Hammudi was kidnapped on Monday night at about 10:00 local time in a southern Baghdad neighborhood.

"Eight armed men burst into her house in Saidiya dressed in plain clothes and entered by pretending to belong to the security forces," Ajili said.

His remarks were confirmed by an Iraqi Interior Ministry source who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Ajili added, "They tied up her son and stole mobile phones, computers and cash before kidnapping Afrah and fleeing."

The 43-year-old reporter works for the London-based pan-Arab newspaper, Asharq al-Awsat, as well as a number of news websites, including Aklaam.

Hammudi published a harshly critical article on the website, slamming armed groups that she said act with impunity across Iraq. It is not, however, clear if she pointed to the affiliation of the armed groups.

Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi condemned the kidnapping on Tuesday and ordered the country's security services to do their best to track her down as well as those responsible for her abduction.

Iraq remains among the most dangerous countries for journalists due to the presence of foreign-backed terror groups such as the Daesh Takfiri terrorists, which target mostly civilian centers across the country but mainly in Baghdad.

Seven journalists have been killed in Iraq in 2016, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said last week, Press TV reported.

Source: Al-Alam News Network

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