Last Updated: Friday, 25 July 2014, 12:52 GMT

Journalists Killed in 2011 - Motive Confirmed: Ahmad Omaid Khpalwak

Publisher Committee to Protect Journalists
Publication Date 20 December 2011
Cite as Committee to Protect Journalists, Journalists Killed in 2011 - Motive Confirmed: Ahmad Omaid Khpalwak, 20 December 2011, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4f045aa4c.html [accessed 25 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Pajhwok Afghan News, BBC
July 28, 2011, in Tarin Kot, Afghanistan

Khpalwak, 25, a BBC and Pajhwok Afghan News reporter, was among at least 22 people killed after gunmen and suicide bombers launched a combined attack on government buildings including the governor's office and police headquarters in Tarin Kot, capital of Uruzgan province, local and international news reports said.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the series of explosions and subsequent gun battle with Afghan and NATO security forces, the reports said. News reports said Khpalwak was killed in crossfire after the initial bomb blasts.

Khpalwak was in the local branch office of state broadcaster Radio and Television of Afghanistan when the attack began, according to Danish Karokhel, the director of Pajhwok. Khpalwak, who had office space in the building, was filing his morning report at the time.

In a statement released on September 8, 2011, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan said one of its soldiers had shot Khpalwak because he thought he was an armed insurgent reaching for a bomb under his vest. "He was unarmed; no weapon was found nearby. It appears all the rounds perceived as coming from him were instead fired by U.S. soldiers," the ISAF statement said. Investigators concluded troops may have mistaken a press card Khpalwak was holding up as identification for a bomb trigger.

The BBC reported that Khpalwak sent his brother two text messages shortly before his death. The first read: "I am hiding. Death has come." In the second, he wrote: "Pray for me if I die."

Medium:Print, Television
Job:Broadcast Reporter, Photographer
Beats Covered:War
Gender:Male
Local or Foreign:Local
Freelance:No
Type of Death:Crossfire/Combat-Related
Suspected Source of Fire:Military Officials
Copyright notice: © Committee to Protect Journalists. All rights reserved. Articles may be reproduced only with permission from CPJ.

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