BEIRUT

Middle East

Somali comedian assassinated in Mogadishu

Somalia transitional federal soldiers stand guard during a visit of Somalia's President to Afgoye on July 30, 2012. AFP PHOTO / Mohamed Abdiwahab

MOGADISHU: Unidentified gunmen shot dead a well-known comedian and radio drama performer in the Somali capital Mogadishu, officials and colleagues said Wednesday.

Abdi Jeylani Malaq Marshale was killed late Tuesday, minutes after leaving Kulmiye radio station, where he worked as drama producer and performer.

"Two men shot and seriously injured Marshale...the comedian was later pronounced dead," said police lieutenant Mohamed Gaal, adding that "unfortunately the assailants escaped."

The shooting of Marshale, who also worked for the London-based Universal TV station, is the latest in a string of apparently targeted killings against workers in the media.

Colleagues mourned the loss of a man they called a "leader" of the war-torn nation's comedy scene.

"He had not done anything wrong to anybody, as far as we are concerned, but they shot him in the head and shoulders," said Yusuf Keynan, a presenter at Kulmiye radio.

"This is a black day for the entire entertainment industry, he was a leader in Somalia comedy and everybody liked his performance."

So far this year, at least one Somali journalist has been targeted and killed each month.

 

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