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Leading Somali journalist slain

  • Story Highlights
  • Gunmen ambush Nasteh Dahir Farah, 36, in southern city of Kismayu
  • Farah, vice president of the National Union of Somali Journalists, died in hospital
  • Amnesty International says Farah is 10th journalist killed in Somalia since 2007
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(CNN) -- A leading Somali reporter was gunned down Saturday in a "targeted assassination," according to the national press union, making him the 10th journalist to be killed in the war-torn African country since last year.

Nasteh Dahir Farah, 36, who freelanced for the BBC and Reuters news agencies in Somalia, was fatally shot on his way home in the southern city of Kismayu about 7 p.m. (noon ET), the National Union of Somali Journalists said Saturday.

A group of armed men fired several shots at Farah, who was elected vice president of the union in 2005. He was taken to a hospital but died 10 minutes after he was admitted, according to the group Reporters Without Borders.

At least nine other journalists have been killed in Somalia since February 2007, according to Amnesty International.

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"No one is protecting Somali journalists, who have become targets for all the armed groups," said Omar Faruq Osman, secretary-general of the journalists union. "We will not stop our work because of these criminals."

The group said Farah had received several death threats.

"We denounce this assassination in strongest terms possible," the group said in a statement.

Somalia has been the scene of brutal fighting since 1991, when warlords overthrew dictator Mohamed Siad Barre before fighting among themselves.

Recently, the presence of Ethiopian troops trying to help defend a transitional government's hold on the capitol city of Mogadishu has united Islamic militant groups seeking to gain control of the city.

"The list of dead just goes on growing while the authorities take no steps to curb the violence which targets journalists," Reporters Without Borders said in a statement.

"This apathy is disgraceful," the group said.

All About SomaliaAmnesty InternationalReporters Without BordersMohamed Siad Barre

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