International and Kosovo media associations have condemned a brutal Wednesday night attack on Kosovo investigative journalist Visar Duriqi, with some warning that 'violence against journalists in Kosovo is on the rise.'
International and local Kosovo press associations have condemned an attack on an investigative journalist, who was brutally beaten near his house in Fushe Kosove at around midnight on Wednesday.
Visar Duriqi, a journalist at online news portal Insajderi, as well as the author and producer of the television show INDOKS, was assaulted by three unidentified individuals at around midnight following a TV debate.
“Three people had been waiting for the journalist Duriqi in front of the entrance of his apartment,” Insajderi reported on Thursday. “He was attacked as soon as he got out of his car.”
Duriqi has authored several episodes on crime and corruption on INDOKS. The police are currently investigating the case.
“It is suspected that three masked persons attacked the victim with fists at the entrance of his apartment, causing bodily injuries,” a police statement read. “The victim was sent to the University Clinical Center of Kosovo for necessary medical treatment and was then discharged.”
The Association of Journalists of Kosovo, AJK, condemned the attack as a threat to freedom of “speech and media” and called on the authorities “to investigate the motives … and shed light on this case.” The AJK also pledged to inform domestic and international stakeholders.
On Thursday, the European Center for Press and Media Freedom, ECPMF, condemned on Twitter what it described as a “brutal attack on journalist Visar Duriqi” and urged Chief Prosecutor Aleksander Lumezi “to urgently and thoroughly investigate and hold the criminals responsible to account.”
Flutura Kusari, legal advisor at ECMPF, wrote on Facebook that “violence against journalists in Kosovo is on the rise” and added that it can only be curbed if punishments for attackers include “harsh sentences”, similarly to when a politician is attacked.
25 February 2021 - 14:03