Somali reporter Ali Ahmed Abdi was killed Sunday, March 4 in Galkayo, Somalia when masked gunmen reportedly shot him in the head after stopping him in the street. Abdi was a reporter for an online Somali news site and formerly a journalist with Galkayo Radio. He was an outspoken advocate for press freedom in Somalia, often highlighting cases of murdered journalists in the country. Freedom House is saddened by his vicious murder and calls for a full investigation and increased efforts to protect media freedom in the country.
Abdi is the 30th journalist murdered in Somalia since 2007, according to the National Union of Somali Journalists and the third journalist killed in Somalia in 2012. Freedom House ranked Somalia as “Not Free” in Freedom of the Press 2011 because of the frequent killings of reporters, harsh legal restrictions, and political instability. The Somali constitution affords press freedom, but the political volatility has largely prevented effective exercise of such freedoms.