An Iranian-born TV mogul who had run afoul of Iran’s government was fatally shot Saturday night by masked gunmen in Istanbul, media reports said.

The identities of the assailants were unknown. But Saeed Karimian, the director of GEM Group, a Persian-language media conglomerate, was reported killed along with his Kuwaiti business partner, whose name was withheld.

The two business executives were driving in a luxury sedan in an upscale district of Istanbul when another vehicle blocked their path, allowing the gunmen to spray Karimian’s car with bullets, according to Turkish media reports. A car that police suspect belonged to the assailants was found torched outside the city.

Turkish media outlets said police are investigating, but there was no official statement on Karimian’s death. The 45-year-old businessman, who was also a British national, was reported dead at the scene. His business partner died at the hospital, reports said.

It was a brazen assault in a major cosmopolitan city and raised questions about both the safety of Iranian news professionals abroad and law and order in Turkey’s largest metropolis.

 

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