Index on Censorship strongly condemns the murder of Ahmed Mohamed al-Mousa, a member of the news website and campaigning organisation Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently (RBSS).
A non-partisan and independent media collective who report on atrocities perpetrated against the civilian population of Raqqa, the group collected an international press freedom award just last month for their work. Al-Mousa was assassinated by a group of unknown masked men on the same day as Index announced his organisation had been long-listed for Index on Censorship’s 2016 Freedom of Expression Awards.
“In their brave pursuit of the truth and their remarkable commitment to the people of Raqqa, RBSS are shining examples to us all. An idea cannot be lost to violence and intimidation and we stand side-by-side with RBSS and its courageous citizen journalists in their refusal to be silenced,” said Index CEO Jodie Ginsberg.
RBSS affiliates are persistently threatened and al-Mousa is the third journalist affiliated with RBSS who has been murdered by Islamic State militants this year.
In October 2015, journalist Ibrahim Abd al-Qader was killed alongside Fares Hamadi in Urfa, southeastern Turkey with a video since surfacing that claims they were murdered to warn all “apostates [that] they will be slaughtered silently”.