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Iraqi journalist Afrah Shawqi kidnapped by gunmen from her home in Baghdad

Iraqi Journalist Afrah Shawqi

Iraqi journalist Afrah Shawqi was kidnapped from her home in Saydiya city in southwest Baghdad, an Iraqi police source said on Tuesday.

In press statements on Tuesday, the source said Afrah Shawqi, a reporter for al-Aalem al-Jadeed online newspaper, was kidnapped by an unknown armed group from her residence in Saydiya, Baghdad.

Her sister, Nibras, wrote on facebook, added that the group, which arrived in a pickup truck, claimed to be affiliated with security authorities.

Her personal possessions and private car were also stolen by the group, the post said.

Afrah has been recently critical of security performance after an assault by an Interior Ministry officer on a school teacher in the province of Dhi Qar. Shawqi had written that the officer ordered the school’s headmaster to sack a student who bumped into his own daughter during a stampede. When the teacher rejected his demand, he assaulted her, according to Shawqi. Social networks users had circulated photos of the officer and his colleagues, all plain-clothed and carrying weapons inside the school.

There is nothing worse in a country than humiliating a teacher; nothing is worse than neglect by those who carry weapons. If the state is anxious to preserve its prestige, it should hold accountable whoever uses weapons illicitly,” Shawqi wrote on her facebook page early Tuesday.

Seven reporters died in Iraq in 2016, out of a total of 57 who died in in conflict areas across the world, according to a recent report by Reporters Without Borders (RSF).