The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed its deep sadness following the horrifying killing of an AFP journalist and his family in Kabul's Serena hotel yesterday evening, Thursday 20 March.
According to media reports, Sardar Ahmad, a staff reporter for Agence France, was shot dead along with his wife and two of his three children, when teenage gunmen attacked the hotel. Reports say the family's youngest son is undergoing emergency treatment after being badly wounded in the attack.
The assault came on the eve of Nawroz, the Persian New Year which is a major holiday in Afghanistan, and the hotel was hosting special celebrations. It is believed that the gunmen managed to penetrate several layers of security to attack the hotel.
"We express our deep sadness following the horrific murder of the journalist Sardar Ahmad and his family in Kabul and we send our condolences to their loved ones at this very difficult time," said IFJ President Jim Boumelha.
Ahmad was a highly respected journalist. Hired by AFP in 2003 to cover daily briefings by the US-led coalition at Bagram airbase, he on to become the agency's senior reporter in Kabul, covering all aspects of life, war and politics in his native country.