18/09/07 (B413) BBC – Les troupes somaliennes conduisent une intervention contre une station somalienne indépendante de Radio : Shabelle – Somali troops raid radio station (En Anglais – Info lectrice)

Somali transitional government forces have opened fire on an independent radio station in Mogadishu, say staff.

Shabelle reporters said soldiers deliberately targeted their office, firing shots through the windows.

One of the radio administrators, Jaffar Muhammad Kuukay, is quoted as saying that bullets damaged equipment and injured at least one person.

Government troops had previously raided Shabelle Radio and detained 18 journalists after a grenade was thrown.

Both Shabelle and HornAfrik have been critical of the Ethiopian-backed transitional government and the Islamic militants who have been trying to topple the administration.


« We do not know why they are targeting us, » Mr Kukay said.

« On Saturday, they said a grenade was thrown at them from the Shabelle building.

But now I do not know what they want. »

Shabelle and two other independent outlets, HornAfrik and IQK Koranic Radio, were briefly banned and taken off air in January and in June, prompting criticism from press freedom watchdogs.

Last month, the owner and a radio presenter of Horn Afrik were killed in separate attacks by unidentified gunmen.

The Committee to Protect Journalists has accused the transitional government of intimidating and persecuting Somali reporters.

Joel Simon, the CPJ’s executive director, said in a statement: « We call on the government to stop this harassment and to move its forces away from the main gates of the Shabelle Media Network offices. »