A female television journalist and her driver were shot and killed in the eastern province of Nangarhar in Afghanistan on Thursday, an incident that underscores an increasing trend of violence against journalists in the country. Malala Maiwand, a reporter at the Enikas Radio and TV and a women rights journalist, was killed along with her driver in an attack on their vehicle in Jalalabad, taking the total number of journalists and media workers killed this year in Afghanistan to 10. “She was on the way to office when the incident happened,” said Attaullah Khogyani, spokesperson for the provincial governor. Not the first of her family to be killed Maiwand is not the first of her family to be targeted. Five years ago, her mother, also an activist, was killed by unknown gunmen. Enikas has also been targeted before, with its owner, Engineer Zalmay, kidnapped for ransom in 2018. “With the killing of Malalai, the working field for female journalists is getting more smaller and the journalists may not dare to continue their jobs the way they were doing before,” Nai, an organisation supporting media in Afghanistan, said in a statement. Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid denied the group’s involvement in the incident. Attacks on media Afghan interior ministry spokesperson Tariq Arian said that in the last decade and a half, the vast majority of journalists killed have been victims of the Taliban. The area has been a hotbed of militant activity, most notably involving Islamic State, but no group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. Last month, Elyas Dayee, a Radio Azadi journalist, was killed in a bomb blast in the southern Helmand province, and Yama Siawash, a former TOLOnews presenter, was killed in a similar blast in Kabul. The Afghan government, German embassy, EU delegation and Britsh ambassador condemned growing attacks on journalists and activists. International donors and governments have also expressed apprehension about a possible reversal of progress on women’s rights over the last two decades if the Taliban return to any sort of power with the withdrawal of foreign troops from the country next year. The Taliban’s hardline rule was marked by oppressive laws for women up until the group was toppled following a 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan.