Somalia killer journalist executed

Monday April 11 2016

Hassan Hanafi, a former media officer for the Somali Islamist group al Shabaab, stands tied to a pole before his execution by shooting at close range on a field in General Kahiye Police Academy in Somalia's capital Mogadishu on April 11, 2016. PHOTO | REUTERS

A journalist affiliated to the Somali Al-Shabaab jihadists, Mr Hassan Hanafi, has been executed for killing his colleagues.

Mr Hanafi was executed by the firing squad in Mogadishu Monday on the orders of a military tribunal.

A masked Mr Hanafi was tied to a pole at an execution field opposite the General Kahiye Police Academy.

The killing

Mr Hanafi was accused of co-plotting the killing of several journalists in Somalia, after being extradited from Kenya at the request of the Somali government.

On March 3, he was sentenced to death by a lower army court in Mogadishu, a sentenced he appealed.


However, on March 26, an Army Appeal Court reaffirmed the death sentence, ruling that Mr Hanafi was responsible for the killing of Sheikh Nur Abkey, a former producer with the state-owned Mogadishu Radio.

The deaths

The executed jihadist was also accused of orchestrating the deaths of several other journalists.

He confessed to being involved in the murder of four.

Mr Hanafi worked for the Idaacadda Quraanka Kariimka (IQK) in Mogadishu, a currently dysfunctional religious broadcaster; and later served with al-Andalus, an Al-Shabaab mouthpiece.

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, a total of 59 journalists have been killed in Somalia since 1992.

Many other media personnel have also fled. This has rendered the Horn of Africa country one of the most dangerous for those engaged in the business and profession.