Somali journalist escapes assassination bid


MOGADISHU, Somalia – A Somali female journalist has reportedly escaped an assassination on Monday, November 1, 2021 when gunmen carried out an ambush attack on her house in the capital Mogadishu, media colleagues said.

Ikran Ali Hashi, a journalist working for Dalsan TV based in Mogadishu, survived Monday’s assassination attempt on her life after unknown gunmen hurled two grenades at the entrance of her house located in Warta Nabad district, her colleague, Aden Mohamed said.

Mohamed says Ikran was also shot several times from the window of her room, but fortunately sh escaped uninjured.

He says the attackers had fled from the crime scene uncaught.

Somali police forces arrived at the spot immediately. They vowed to pursue the armed assailants but none of them was arrested.

In a phone interview with Ikran, she seemed to be worried about the attack on her house in Mogadishu. She also voiced her deep concern about the safety of her child.

Ikran produces radio and TV programs on social issues, particularly in the fight against female genital mutilation (FGM) and educating young people about the risks of joining Al-Shabaab, an al Qaeda linked group based in Somalia.

She has likely been targeted for her journalism.

Director of Dalsan media group, Hassan Ali Gesey, condemned the assassination attempt on Ikran’s life. He says the attack was meant silence the journalists but vowed that they would continue executing their journalism duties.

In 2019, Ikran fled the country with her husband, Munasar Mohamed Abdi after receiving death threats through phone calls and text messages for weeks.

Ikran’s family was facing death threats when her husband, who is also a journalist, released a report of a group of men from a family who burned Ahmad Mukhtar, a father of 12 kids to death after his nephew married a girl from “major clan” while the victim was from one of the “minority clans” in Somalia.

After a year of exile, Ikraan returned back to Mogadishu and resumed her occupation at the same media station in the capital Mogadishu.

Somali journalists frequently receive threats but police rarely investigate them or adequately protect reporters.

Somalia is one of the most dangerous countries for media workers, with dozens of journalists have been killed since 1992, soon after a civil war began in the Horn of Africa nation, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

It’s not entirely clear who has been killing journalists, but, Al-Shabab rebels, warlords, criminals, and even government agents have all been accused as perpetrators.