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M.A.S.E.S condemns the shooting attack on Women Journalist in northeast (ENG / FRA)

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M.A.S.E.S strongly condemns this attack and the attack on the Freedom of Press. We also join Reports without Borders and urge the authorities to do everything in their power to shed light on this murder attempt, and not to rule out the possibility of a link to the victim’s work as a journalist,”

Reporters Without Borders - Press release
INDIA

Woman journalist critically injured in shooting attack in northeast

Reporters Without Borders condemns a shooting attack yesterday in which Tongam Rina, associate editor of the Arunachal Timesnewspaper in Itanagar, capital of the northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh, was seriously injured.

“We urge the authorities to do everything in their power to shed light on this murder attempt, and not to rule out the possibility of a link to the victim’s work as a journalist,” Reporters Without Borders said. “The sensitive stories Rina has covered could have been the motive. The police should take them into account. They should also take a close look at the companies and government institutions that appeared in her stories.”

As Rina arrived at the Arunachal Times offices at around 6:15 p.m., unidentified gunmen opened fire on her before fleeing the crime scene. She was rushed to the Rama Krishna Mission Hospital, where she remains in intensive care. The Times of India quoted hospital sources as saying she sustained serious injuries to the spinal cord and intestines.

The motive of the attack is still unknown but the national and local media have suggested possibilities. The Seven Sisters Post said it may have been linked to her coverage of alleged corruption in the distribution of food and kerosene to the poor in Arunachal Pradesh state. Haku Tapa, a freelancer who worked with her on this story, had to be hospitalized after being attacked a few weeks ago.

Rina is also vice-president of the Siang People’s Forum, one of several civil society groups participating in a campaign against the construction of dams on the Siang River. Her newspaper, the Arunachal Times, has covered the campaign extensively and opposes the dams.

According to the US journalist Jason Overdorf, there were unsuccessful attempts to intimidate and bribe Rina last year to end her opposition to the dams. The newspaper Northeast Today said that she recently received threats and that around 10 unidentified individuals ransacked the Arunachal Times offices on the night of 15 April – an attack that was not claimed by any organization.

India is ranked 131st out of 179 countries in the 2011-2012 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.

__________________________
INDE

Une journaliste dans un état critique suite à une attaque à l’arme à feu

Reporters sans frontières condamne la tentative d’assassinat dont a été victime la journaliste de The Arunachal Times, Tongam Rina, le 15 juillet 2012, à Itanagar, dans l’état d’Arunachal Pradesh (Nord-Est).

“Nous demandons aux autorités de faire tout leur possible afin d’élucider cette attaque, sans écarter la piste professionnelle. Les enquêtes sensibles menées par la journaliste pourraient être à l’origine de cette attaque et doivent être prises en considération dans l’enquête policière, qui ne doit pas ignorer les entreprises et institutions mises en cause par la journaliste.” a déclaré Reporters sans frontières.

Tongam Rina, rédactrice adjointe du quotidien The Arunachal Times, entrait dans son bureau à Itanagar vers 18h15, quand un ou plusieurs individus non identifiés ont ouvert le feu sur la journaliste avant de prendre la fuite.

Emmenée d’urgence à l’hôpital Rama Krishna Mission, elle est actuellement en soins intensifs. Selon des sources médicales citées par The Times of India, elle aurait reçu une balle au côté droit de la taille, touchant la colonne vertébrale et l’intestin.

Le mobile de l’attaque reste inconnu, mais des hypothèses ont été avancées par certains médias. Selon le Seven Sisters Post, il pourrait être lié aux enquêtes menées par la journaliste sur un scandale concernant le système public de distribution de nourriture et de kérosène pour l’éclairage électrique des plus démunis dans l’état d’Arunachal Pradesh. Le journaliste freelance Haku Tapa, qui avait collaboré avec Tongam Rina dans cette enquête, a également été victime d’une attaque, il y a quelques semaines, suite à laquelle il a dû être hospitalisé.

En plus de son travail de journaliste, Tongam Rina, est aussi vice présidente du Siang People’s Forum, l’une des organisations participant au mouvement contre la construction de barrages sur le fleuve Siang. Son journal, The Arunachal Times, a largement couvert la question, en prenant position contre le projet.

D’après le journaliste Jason Overdorf, l’année dernière, Tongam Rina avait été victime d’intimidations et de tentatives de corruption de la part d’individus favorables au projet de barrages, dans le but de la convaincre, en vain, d’arrêter d’écrire des articles critiques sur la question.

Selon le journal Northeast Today, la journaliste avait fait récemment l’objet de menaces de la part d’inconnus. Dans la nuit du 15 avril 2012, les bureaux du Arunachal Times avaient notamment été vandalisés, par un groupe d’une dizaine de personnes qui n’avaient pas revendiqué leur geste.

L’Inde se situe à la 131e place, sur 179 pays recensés, dans le classement mondial de la liberté de la presse 2011-2012 établi par Reporters sans frontières.

Benjamin Ismaïl

Head of Asia-Pacific Desk
Reporters Without Borders
Paris – France
+33 1 44 83 84 70
Twitter: @RSFAsiaPacific, @RSF_Asia (中文)

Facebook : facebook.com/reporterssansfrontieres
Skype: rsfasia
Website: http://en.rsf.org/asia,2.html

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Comments

Kim Crane's picture

Thank you for bringing this

Thank you for bringing this awful story to light. I hope Tongam Rina pulls through and lives. May she one day see justice for her attackers and continue wielding her voice against the powerful people trying to silence her.

kotravai's picture

thanks

thanks Crane.

Kotravai
M.A.S.E.S - Movement Against Sexual Exploitation and Sexism

Wendyiscalm's picture

Your blogs

Your articles are relevant and necessary. Keep up the great work.

Wendy Stebbins

Wendy Stebbins
Founder/CEO
I AM ONE IN A MILLION Non-Profit Organization focused on helping street orphans and vulnerable children in Livingstone, Zambia Africa.

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