Shahpoor Saber | Institute for War and Peace Reporting


Shahpoor Saber

Shahpoor Saber
IWPR trainee

I was born in the village of Seyawoshan, Gozara District, in Herat province in 1979, and grew up in a cultured family. I now live in Herat city.

My father graduated from the military academy and in his last position, was commander of Herat airport until he resigned in 1988.

I entered the journalism faculty of Herat University in 2001 and began my journalism career while a student working on an independent newspaper. During my first year at university, I also worked with the Sada-e Jawan radio station which belonged to the university. All this work was unpaid but because I was very hard-working, the university chancellor's office decided to pay me a stipend of 80 US dollars monthly. I also worked with independent weekly Isar.

After obtaining my diploma from the university, I started working with a Danish aid agency, DACAAR, as the social officer and stayed for six months. I left because journalism was my first love, even though DACAAR tried its best to keep me.

A newly established radio station, Radio Faryad, offered me the position of head of political and news section. I then joined the English section of Al Jazeera TV, where I still work, but I still produce political debate programmes and news bulletins for the radio station. I have also been working for IWPR for a year.

During the Taleban regime and before entering university, I worked for the municipality of Herat in the departments of commerce, archives and personnel for three years.

Although I have done a range of different jobs, it is journalism that attracts me most.

I have also taken part in IWPR training workshops, which have taught me as much as university classes. Thanks to IWPR, I have learned a vast amount about different kinds of news and reporting, including investigative and feature work. It is no exaggeration to say IWPR has taught me all I know.

I have produced a number of exclusive stories for IWPR, including a full-length interview with Gholam Yahya Akbari, a man wanted by the Afghan and foreign forces for many years. Another important report was my piece on the anti-election propaganda of the Taleban; for this, I spent a lot of time with the Taleban, watching their every step. And when coalition forces raided Bakwah district in Farah province, killing 150 Afghan civilians, again I was the only one on the scene.

For me, a journalist has to be faithful, honest, impartial, and independent and has to care about the accuracy of his reports. Although speed is important, I believe that a journalist should not sacrifice accuracy for speed.

Stories by the author

Shahpoor Saber
1 Aug 11
IWPR report on dire consequences of cheap imports for Herat factories triggers further press coverage.
Shahpoor Saber
1 Aug 11
IWPR report on dire consequences of cheap imports for Herat factories triggers further press coverage.
A shopping street in Herat. (Photo: Isafmedia/US. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Kevin Wallace)
Shahpoor Saber
14 Jun 11
Manufacturing sector struggles against flood of cheaper imports.
Taliban members in Kandahar surrender and join the government's peace process, April 2011. (Photo: ISAF/Major James Crawford)
Mina Habib, Shahpoor Saber
13 May 11
Despite fears of revenge attacks, analysts predict insurgents’ morale and funding will be sapped.
Italian soldiers running a first-aid course for Afghans in Gozara province. Some residents are unhappy that promised reconstruction work has yet to materialise. (Photo: ISAF media)
Shahpoor Saber
9 May 11
Locals say insurgents feeding on resentment at undelivered pledges.
Shahpoor Saber
7 Jan 11
Best and brightest emigrate from Herat province to escape worsening prospects.
Some unsuccessful election candidates in Herat claim they were fell victim to a campaign to stop Pashtuns getting into parliament. (Photo: Tracy Hunter/Flickr)
Shahpoor Saber
16 Dec 10
With final election results released, unsuccessful contenders from Pashtun group say they were systematically excluded.
Shahpoor Saber
9 Nov 10
Last three months have seen a rise in insurgent activity across formerly peaceful region.
Taleban say they are strong enough to stop elections happening in parts of Herat province. (Photo: ISAF)
Bahman Boman, Shahpoor Saber
24 Aug 10
Voters and candidates in Balkh and Herat warn that security fears are disrupting election preparations.