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Middle East & Arab World

Bomb Blast at Media in Iraq Raises Concern of Journalists’ Safety

13 February 2014

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has demanded urgent action from the Iraqi government following an attack on the office of independent newspaper, Al-sabah al-jadeed, in the early hours of Monday morning, 10 February.

According to reports, windows, furniture and equipment were damaged when a bomb went off at 4.30am at the front of the newspaper's building in Baghdad. Two other bombs were dismantled. No one was injured as the newspaper was deserted for the night.

Reports said that the attack followed a campaign demanding the closure of the paper after it published its weekly supplement Zadlast Thursday. The supplement focused on the 35th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in Iran and the cover featured a portrait of Iran's spiritual leader, Ali Khamenei. The newspaper has produced hundreds of portraits of political and religious figures, from Iraqi president Jalal Talabani to Nelson Mandela.

The day after publishing the portrait, the newspaper issued an explanation on its front page which said it did not mean to insult Ali Khamanei, and its intention was to mark the anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.