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Two Iraqi journalists of Sunni TV network killed

Two Iraqi journalists working with a Sunni television network were kidnapped and killed last month, confirms the Paris-based media watchdog.

world Updated: Jul 05, 2007 03:35 IST

Two Iraqi journalists working with a Sunni television network were kidnapped and killed last month, the Paris-based media watchdog Reporters Without Borders said on Wednesday.

Baghdad TV journalists, Mohammed Hilal Karji and Sarmad Hamdi al-Hassani, were kidnapped separately and their bodies were later found in the morgues, the watchdog said.

Baghdad TV is owned by Iraq's Sunni Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi's Iraqi Islamic Party.

Karji was kidnapped on June 8 outside his home while on his way to work in the Yusifiyah region south of Baghdad, while Hassani was seized from his home in Baghdad's Al-Jamia neighbourhood on June 27.

Their bodies were later found in local morgues.

Baghdad TV has experienced several attacks in the past few months, the deadliest one on April 5 when a suicide bomber exploded his truck at the channel's Baghdad headquarters.

The attack was later followed by armed men storming the office and killing deputy director Thaer Ahmed Jabr and one of his assistants. Nine others were wounded.

After the attack the network moved its office to the northern region of Sulaimaniyah, a safer place for journalists.

At least 187 journalists and media assistants have been killed in Iraq since the start of the March 2003 US-led invasion.

Two are missing and there has been no news of 14 others since they were kidnapped, according to the media watchdog.

The vast majority have been Iraqis killed by insurgent groups or militias angered by their coverage or ideologically opposed to their employers. Others have been caught in the crossfire between the opposing sides.