Probe launched into killing of Muslim radio anchor, peace advocate

Cristina Chi - Philstar.com
Probe launched into killing of Muslim radio anchor, peace advocate
Cotabato City in the southern Philippines is seen in this satellite image rendering.
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MANILA, Philippines — The Presidential Task Force on Media Security said on Tuesday that it is coordinating with law enforcement officials to investigate the killing of 32-year-old radio anchor Mohammad Hessam Midtimbang.

In a statement, the media task force condemned the killing of Midtimbang and considers the incident related to his work as a radio anchor for the Bangsamoro Darul Ifta radio program being aired over Gabay Radio 97.7 FM.

On Monday night, Midtimbang was about to drive his car that was parked along Governor Gutierrez Avenue when a man shot him six times with a .45 caliber pistol, according to Cotabato City police.

“We condemn this senseless act of violence as it has no place in our society,” Executive Director Paul Gutierrez said.

The media task force is coordinating with the Philippine National Police to investigate the incident and with the 6th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army for support in gathering information.

Besides his work in radio broadcasting, Midtimbang is also part of the Bangsamoro Darul Iftah, also known as the House of Opinions, which promotes cultural and religious solidarity among Muslim, Christians and indigenous non-Moro communities in southern cities and provinces.

Midtimbang’s death follows the killing of another radio broadcaster, Cris Bundoquin, who was gunned down in May. 

These two deaths come less than a year after the killing of broadcaster Rey Blanco in Oriental Mindoro and the killing of popular radio personality Percy Lapid.

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines has documented at least 60 reported violations against journalists from June 30, 2022 to April 30, 2023

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