Body of Reuters photographer was badly mutilated in Taliban custody, officials ...

Body of Reuters photographer was badly mutilated in Taliban custody, officials ...
Body of Reuters photographer was badly mutilated in Taliban custody, officials ...

The body of a murdered Reuters photographer was badly mutilated by the Taliban before it was sent home to India, it has emerged.

Danish Siddiqui, 38, was buried in Delhi, India, two days after he was killed covering fighting between Afghan security forces and the Taliban near a border crossing with Pakistan earlier this month.

The Pulitzer prize-winning Indian photographer was embedded with Afghan special forces in the former Taliban bastion of Kandahar when he died.

He arrived in New Delhi on a flight from Afghanistan on July 18 and his coffin was taken to his home where hundreds of friends and news media colleagues had gathered outside.

The body of a murdered Reuters photographer Danish Siddiqui, 38, was badly mutilated by the Taliban before it was sent home to New Delhi, India, it has emerged. Pictured: Mourner's carry Mr Siddiqui's coffin on July 18

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The body of a murdered Reuters photographer Danish Siddiqui, 38, was badly mutilated by the Taliban before it was sent home to New Delhi, India, it has emerged. Pictured: Mourner's carry Mr Siddiqui's coffin on July 18

Photographs of his body show it was injured but still intact after the commando group he was accompanying were ambushed by the Taliban in Spin Boldak.

But when it was transferred to the Red Cross it had been badly mutilated according to Indian and Afghan officials.

They said his face was unrecognisable, that there were dozens of bullet holes in his body, and that there were tire marks on both his face and chest.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid denied any wrongdoing, according to the New York Times

But Meenakshi Ganguly, the South Asia director for Human Rights Watch, told the New York Times: 'Danish always chose to be on the front lines so that abuses and atrocities could not remain hidden.

'The brutality with which Taliban fighters punished Danish proves the abuses that he was documenting.' 

Photographers pay homage to Reuters journalist Danish Siddiqui in front of his portrait at Swayambhunath Stupa in Kathmandu

Photographers pay homage to Reuters journalist Danish Siddiqui in front of his portrait at Swayambhunath Stupa in Kathmandu

Bangladeshi journalists hold placards during a candlelight vigil to pay tribute to slain Reuters photojournalist Danish Siddiqui, in front of the Raju Memorial Sculpture at Dhaka University, in Dhaka, Bangladesh

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Bangladeshi journalists hold placards during a candlelight vigil to pay tribute to slain Reuters photojournalist Danish Siddiqui, in front of the Raju Memorial Sculpture at Dhaka University, in Dhaka, Bangladesh

According to India's NDTV, Siddiqui was first wounded by shrapnel, and was taken to a nearby Mosque in the Spin Boldak region to receive first aid.

But word spread that he was at the mosque, leading to the taliban to attack, the news outlet said. A local investigation suggested that the Taliban only attacked because they knew Mr Boldak's was inside, it said.

'Siddiqui was alive when the Taliban captured him. The Taliban verified Siddiqui's identity and then executed him, as well as those with him. The commander and the remainder of his team died as they tried to rescue him,' the local report said, according to NDTV. 

It comes as Afghan authorities arrested four journalists on propaganda charges after they tried to enter the contested area of Spin Boldak in southern Kandahar province, where security forces have been clashing with Taliban fighters.

The move drew swift criticism from media and rights advocates, though the government said they wanted to ensure reporters were safe.

The Ministry of Interior said three journalists in Kandahar working for local radio and one working for local television had been arrested after ignoring a warning from the National

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