A wreckage of a bus which carried employees of an Afghan television station and was bombed is seen in Kabul, Afghanistan May 30, 2020. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani
KABUL (Reuters) – A journalist and a technician were killed and at least seven people were wounded when a private bus carrying employees of an Afghan television station was bombed in Kabul on Saturday, the channel’s chief executive said.
The Taliban said in a statement that its fighters were not responsible for the attack and no other militant group claimed responsibility for the blast, which took place during the evening rush hour.
“Our colleagues Mir Wahed Shah, an economic reporter, and Shafiq Amiri, an employee in the technical department, were martyred in the incident,” said Mohammad Rafi Rafiq Sediqi, chief executive of the state-run Khurshid TV station.
He said six other reporters and a driver were wounded in the blast, which the interior ministry described as a militant attack.
Taliban and other Islamist insurgents have repeatedly targeted Afghan journalists, killing 15 in 2018, the deadliest year yet for the Afghan media, according to the media freedom group Reporters Without Borders.
Last year, two employees of Khurshid TV were killed and two were wounded in a similar attack.
The Taliban warned the Afghan media last year to stop broadcasting what it called “anti-Taliban statements”.
In 2016, a Taliban suicide bomber rammed his car into a bus carrying employees of Tolo TV, the country’s largest private broadcaster, killing seven journalists.
The Taliban said Tolo was producing propaganda for the U.S. military and western-backed Afghan government.
Reporting by Orooj Hakimi, Hameed Farzad in Kabul; Writing by Rupam Jain; Editing by Christina Fincher and Helen Popper