Security elements of Najaf SWAT forces detained the correspondent of the “Al-Mustaqil” newspaper, Ali Al-Sharifi, while conveying traffic congestion and suffering facing visitors to reach Najaf province, on Sunday night.
Al-Sharifi’s colleague told the Press FreedomAdvocacy Association in Iraq that SWAT elements detained him for about two hours, while he was documenting the heavy traffic at the entrances ofNajaf, due to the blocking of a number of roads. Theforce pulled out his mobile phone, insulted and abused him.
The reporter noted that he had informed the force of his journalistic duty, but the force officer insisted on arresting him and confiscating his equipment.
A video was circulated on social media and it showed the moment security forces stormed the filming site and assaulted the reporter.
The Association condemns what the journalist was subjected to and considers it a violation of the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of journalistic and media work in the country.
In its reports, the association repeatedly points out the methods of violence against press, how cadres are prevented from performing their tasks, wheresecurity forces treat journalists as enemies.
The association holds the commander-in-chief of the armed forces responsible for the beatings, insults, abuses and denial of coverage by the official security forces, and considers him a collaborator in the repeated constitutional violations in Iraq, because of his indifference to what the security forces do tojournalists.