Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is alarmed to learn of the killing of another journalist
Balochistan province on August 14.
According to the Pakistan Federal
Union of Journalists (PFUJ), Muneer Shakir was attacked by unknown persons who opened
fire on him at 12.20pm as he headed home from the press club in Khuzdar, in
central Balochistan. Shakir died at District Headquarters Hospital
Shakir, who was aged in his early
30s, worked for Online News Network and was a correspondent with Balochi television
Members of the Balochistan Union of
Journalists (BUJ) reported that Shakir was not known to have received any
The PFUJ, an affiliate of the IFJ,
said in a statement that the murder of Shakir – the sixth journalist killed in Pakistan
in 2011 and the seventh media worker killed in Balochistan since early 2010 – exposed
the failure of the Government to protect media personnel.
The BUJ said the provincial government had been informed repeatedly about
threats against journalists, many of whom were reporting without assurance of
salaries, but had taken no preventive action. The insecure situation in
Balochistan was compelling many journalists to leave the profession, the BUJ
Elsewhere in Pakistan, grave concerns are held for the
welfare of tribal journalist Rehmatullah Dawar, who was abducted in North Waziristan, in the Federally Administered Tribal
Areas (FATA), on August 11.
Dawar, of AAJ TV and the Urdu daily Ausaf, was snatched at a bazaar in
Miranshah by unidentified men. No one has claimed responsibility and the motive
remains unclear. However, the local Taliban has offered to assist to locate
“It is well beyond time for media
houses in Pakistan
to take responsibility to protect their workers amid increasing risks,” IFJ Asia-Pacific said.
“And power-holders and government
authorities at all levels must take concerted action to end impunity by
bringing perpetrators to justice.”
In just one example, Awaz TV
cameraman Abdul Salam Soomro has received serious threats after he filmed a
paramilitary ranger killing unarmed teenager Sarfraz Shah in Karachi in June.
On August 12, after the Ranger accused
of the killing was sentenced to death, PFUJ Secretary General Amin Yousuf demanded
media organisations implement measures, including through the provision of insurance,
to protect media workers who serve the public interest.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0919
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