2018 Annual Report
10 Jan, 2019

In 2018, AJSC has recorded a total of 121 cases of violence against journalists and media workers, including
cases of murder, injury, threats, temporary detention, abduction, and many more. 17 journalists and media
workers were killed this year, which once again places Afghanistan as the most dangerous country for journalists. In addition to 17 cases of murder, AJSC registered 15 cases of injury, 21 cases of physical assault, 38
cases of threats and intimidation, 23 cases of insults and mistreatment, 1 case of inappropriate expulsion of
journalist by a media manager, 5 cases of temporary detention, and 1 case of abduction.
The statistics of violence against journalists in 2018 show a 28% decline compared to 2017, as in 2017, the
committee recorded 169 cases of violence against journalists and media workers. Similarly, murder figures
show a 15% decrease compared to 2017 in which 20 journalists and media workers were killed. From 17
cases of murder in this year, the Taliban and ISIS have been responsible for 15 cases, the perpetrator of the
two other cases of murder are unidentified.
Similar to 2017, ISIS and the Taliban are responsible for the majority of cases of violence, namely 50 cases. Individuals affiliated with the government rank second, as they are responsible for 44 cases of violence.
Unidentified individuals come third, as they are responsible for 16 cases of violence. Powerful individuals
(warlords, local militia, power brokers) are responsible for 6 cases, and media managers are responsible for
5 cases of mistreatment.
From 121 cases of violence recorded this year, 11 of it was perpetrated against women journalists and media
In 2018, the majority of cases of violence, which constitute 42 cases, took place in Kabul zone, which is
composed of Kabul, Parwan, Kapisa and Panjsher. The western zone (Heraat, Farah, Badghees, Neemroz and
Ghor), with 22 cases, come second. The least number of cases of violence, 6 cases, occurred in the northern
zone (Balkh, Jawzjan, Faryab and Sare Pul).
One of the most challenging experience occurred in 2018 was the change in the nature of the threats against
journalists. The terrorist groups are looking for the chances to target journalists collectively and have proven this on two separate occasions. On April 30, they targeted a crowd of journalists in Shashdarak – Kabul,
killing 9 journalists. In another incident on September, two staff of Tolo TV were targeted and murdered. on
both occasions, journalists were targeted when they gather at the scene of the first terrorist incident for news
Although the change in the nature of threats against journalists is a matter of deep concern, the majority
of media outlets have not taken proper security measures to protect their office and staff. Meanwhile, the
government has not placed any effort to reduce the vulnerability of journalists covering terrorist incidents
and other hostile situations. When it comes to journalists, a large number of them have not learned the safety skills required for their protection. additionally, based on AJSC observation, those journalists who have
learned the safety skills and have attended the training programs, do not adhere the safety measures as well.
In 2018, a total of 34 media outlets stopped operation, and 57 new media outlets were established. The outlets
that had to close down their operation belonged to various parts of Afghanistan. 1 was based in the northeastern zone (Baghland, Kunduz, Takhar and Badakhshan), 5 in the central zone (Ghazni, Bamyan, Wardak,
Daikundi), 4 in western zone (Heart, Farah, Neemroz, Badghees and Ghor), 1 in eastern zone (Nengrahar,
Laghman, Kunar), 2 in northern zone (Balkh, Jawzjan, Sare Pul, Faryab), and 21 media outlets in the zone
of Kabul (Kabul, Parwan, Kapisa and Panjshir provinces). From the newly established media outlets, 5 were
established in the northeastern zone, 4 in the central zone, 4 in the western zone, 2 in the eastern zone, 1 in
the southwestern zone (Kandahar, Helmand, Uruzgan, Zabul), 5 in the northern zone, 4 in the southeastern
zone (Khost, Pakteya, Paktika), and 32 in the zone of Kabul.
From 34 media outlets no longer active, 4 were TV stations, 10 Radio stations, 18 print media, and 2 digital
From 57 newly established media, 13 are TV stations, 13 Radio stations, 25 print media, and 6 online media.
Access to information remains a challenge to journalism. This challenge, until not fundamentally resolved,
affects the quality of information and makes the work of journalists difficult.