SDF kidnapped German journalists in Qamishli under the pretext of exposing a military secret on the border with Turkey

SDF kidnapped German journalists in Qamishli under the pretext of exposing a military secret on the border with Turkey
SDF kidnapped German journalists in Qamishli under the pretext of exposing a military secret on the border with Turkey
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Kurdish media revealed that the QSD militia kidnapped two German journalists from the city of Qamishli, in a renewed violation of media freedoms, just as it is the case of the Assad militia.

The Kurdish Basnews website said that the SDF militia intelligence arrested German journalist Sebastian Backhaus and his colleague, a cameraman, in the city of Qamishli.

He added that the arrest came against the backdrop of filming tunnels and military sites of the “SDF” east of Qamishli, without obtaining security approval and coordination with the military authorities.

The kidnapping of the two journalists came despite their coordination with the Media Department of the “SDF” before they entered the areas under its control through the Fishkhabour crossing, which connects the Kurdistan Region with the areas under the control of the SDF.

According to the source, the two journalists were not officially arrested, but rather were kidnapped from the street, as contact with them was lost three days ago, and they did not return to the hotel where they were staying in the city.

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While the Kurdish website indicated that there are diplomatic efforts and external contacts with the SDF militia, with the aim of releasing the German journalists.

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The SDF militia restricts media freedoms in its areas of control, pursues activists, and prevents free media institutions that do not adopt their propaganda from operating in their areas of control.

At the end of last June, the Syrian Network for Human Rights documented the arrest of at least 16 journalists and media workers by the SDF, during a security campaign it launched in Raqqa governorate.

An investigation by the Qatari Al-Jazeera channel revealed in 2021 that the SDF militia dug hundreds of tunnels in Qamishli and Rmeilan, many of them near the Turkish border.

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