By: Lailuma Noori
27 Hoot coinciding with 17 March is National Journalist Day. Today, Afghanistan has rich laws on mass media and is experiencing an open media environment. Sacrifices and efforts of journalists have put serious and positive impacts on promotion of freedom of speech, culture, development and compliance of human values. Today, all media organizations are managed and led by youth in the country, showing formation of a considerable capacity in the media sector. Most of work force in Afghanistan private media sector is youth.
Afghan journalists have shown their active presence in various news fields collecting reports from different parts of the country as they are the eye and ear of the people. They play the mediating role between the people and government officials. They hear the pain and problems of the people and report them to officials. On the other hand, journalists reflect the respond of government officials to the people.
Challenges against journalists and media are more serious and increasing day by day. They are being threatened by armed irresponsible individuals, warlords, terrorist groups such as Taliban and Daesh as unpleasant traditions and power are still big challenge against media and journalists in the country.
Taliban and Daesh attacks on media and journalists as well as government and private media organizations in Nangarhar and Kabul are very good examples of such serious dangers for media operation as well as freedom of expression in the country.
Undoubtedly, being journalist in challenging and unstable environment is challenging, but journalists are never tired of responsibility they fulfill. They go forward without any fear and tiredness and do fulfill their responsibility they have against the people and their profession.
The culture of immunity for media in Afghanistan is unacceptable as continuation of the process affects the journalists’ professional operation as well as media operation in the country. Afghanistan government high-ranking officials have always spoken about their political commitment to defending journalists and freedom of expression, but unfortunately they have not taken any practical and constructive steps so far. It is necessary that the culture of immunity from punishment of crimes should be ended in the country. Freedom of media and expression is a need for a society and these values should not be threatened and challenged. When journalists are targeted, in general a society will pay the price. Lots of journalists have been targeted in the country; therefore, perpetrators of such crimes should be arrested and submitted to justice. National Journalists Day is commemorated amid of violence against journalists in the country as many journalists have left their jobs due to increasing of violence against journalists, while a number of journalists have left for other foreign countries due to increasing of insecurity in recent years.