Mohammed Bdaiwi Obaid al-Shammari, the Baghdad bureau chief of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty’s Radio Free Iraq, was shot to death on March 22 at a checkpoint near the radio’s office in Baghdad. RFI/RL reported that the veteran journalist, 46, was killed by a member of the Iraqi presidential guard following a verbal argument between Shammari and the Kurdish special forces who protect the nearby home of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani. The U.S.-funded radio network said the guard suspected in the shooting was later turned over to the police only after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki personally intervened.