Journalists' associations condemn attack on Tongam Rina
South Asia Women in Media (SAWM) has strongly condemned the attack on Tongam Rina, associate editor of the Arunachal Times, in Itanagar on July 15, 2012. A valued member of SAWM, Rina was entering her office when she shot at by an unidentified gunman who remains at large. The senior journalist is also the President of the Arunachal Pradesh Union of Working Journalists.
SAWM notes that attacks on the media are not new in the northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh. Three months ago the office of the Arunachal Times, a leading English daily of the State, was vandalised by a group of ten intruders. One-and-a-half years ago, two women reporters, Appu Gapak and Nyapi Bomjen, of the Sentinel Arunachal, were attacked by the local police in Itanagar while on an assignment. Despite strong evidence and a case being registered, the guilty have not been punished.
As a regional organisation representing women journalists from the SAARC countries, SAWM is disturbed by the increasingly dangerous climate in which media professionals function in South Asia and is especially concerned about the poor security of women journalists. It adds its voice to those of other independent media collectives to strongly urge the State and Central Governments to ensure the safety of working women journalists in the Northeast and bring those guilty of acts of violence, assault and intimidation to justice urgently.
Statements have also been issued by
The International Federation of Journalists http://asiapacific.ifj.org/
Reporters Without Borders http://en.rsf.org/
The Committee to Protect Journalists Asia http://cpj.org/