Monitoring press freedom and international affairs from Mid-Missouri Public Radio and the Missouri School of Journalism

Brother of slain Syrian journalist attacked in Turkey

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses people from southeastern Turkey, in Ankara Oct. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Presidential Press Service, Pool )

A Syrian journalist whose brother was killed in a suspected attack by the Islamic State in October has escaped an attack in southeastern Turkey.

Ahmed Abd al-Qader, the director of the Syrian news website Eye on the Homeland, was attacked March 8 by two men outside his residential building in the city of Urfa, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. The men tried to grab Al-Qader but he escaped with only minor injuries after hitting one of the assailants with the case of canned soft drinks he was carrying, the New York-based press freedom group said, citing the journalist.

Al-Qader told CPJ he believes the attackers are from the Islamic State, or ISIL, which has increasingly targeted journalists and bloggers in Syria and Turkey. The group is also suspected of beheading al-Qadr's brother, Ibrahim Abd al-Qader, a founder of the news site Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, as well as friend Fares Hamadi of the Syrian news site Eye on the Homeland in an October attack in southeastern Turkey.

Syrian filmmaker, Naji Jerf, who also worked for Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, was shot in the head Dec. 27 in the southern Turkish city of Gaziantep. ISIL claimed responsibility for his death, according to the Washington Post. Turkish police arrested a suspect in January, who is now pending trial, according to AP.

Another member of Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently was killed days before Jerf. Ahmed Mohamed al-Mousa was shot in front of his house in Idlib, Syria, Dec. 16. ISIL took responsibility for his death, according to CPJ. The group is also responsible for the deaths of al-Mousa's father and aunt.

Several Syrian journalists in Turkey demanded protection from the Turkish government in a meeting with President Recip Erdogan Jan. 22. However, one of the journalists who attended the meeting, Rami Jarrah, was detained Feb. 17 and then released Feb. 23 without explanation.

Monitoring press freedom and international affairs from Mid-Missouri Public Radio and the Missouri School of Journalism.
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