Slain tribal journalist laid to rest

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Amidst tears, tribal journalist Mukkarram Khan Atif was laid to rest in the Shabqadar town of Charsada district on Wednesday morning. Mukarram, who was associated with Voice of America’s (VoA) Pushto radio service “Deewa” and Dunya TV, was shot dead by unidentified attackers on Tuesday evening. Thousands of people from Charsada and Mohmand Agency attended his funeral prayers.
Representatives of various media groups, including the Tribal Union of Journalists, Khyber Union of Journalists, Peshawar Press Club and South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA), were also present at the funeral. Soon after laying Mukarram to rest, the journalists protested against their colleague’s murder and demanded strict action against the militants. They shouted slogans against the militants and their sympathisers in political parties and security forces. The representatives from the Peshawar Press Club and other local journalists’ unions said the militants had been asking them to terminate the membership of all journalists associated with foreign media groups such as the VoA and BBC. Mukarram, 45, belonged to Mohmand Agency but relocated to Shabqadar a couple of years ago for unknown reasons. Reportedly, he had been receiving telephonic threats for several months before his death. Taliban Spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan has claimed the responsibility for Mukkarram’s murder.