Well known Afghan journalist murdered outside Kabul home, found covered in stab wounds

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Police are investigating the murder of a well known Afghan journalist who was found outside his Kabul home this weekend covered in stab wounds.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai issued a statement ordering authorities to spare no effort in bringing Sayed Hamid Noori's killers to justice. Noori had once been an anchor for state television and a newspaper editor. More recently, he held a leadership position in Afghanistan's Association of Independent Journalists and teacher of young journalists.

Reporters in Afghanistan face pressure from the government, local politicians and Taliban insurgents, all of whom look askance at negative reporting. At least 20 Afghan journalists have been killed and 200 physically assaulted in the past decade, with scores more leaving the profession or fleeing the country amid threats to their safety.

It wasn't clear whether Noori's killing was linked to his professional life.

Abdul Hameed Mubarez, head of the journalist's association of which Noori was vice president, said Noori had left his home at about 10:30 p.m. Sunday after receiving a series of phone calls, suggesting that he either knew his assailants or had been set up. He said Noori's body was found a few feet (meters) away, covered in stab wounds.

"So far nobody knows who is behind this," Mubarez said.