The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is horrified by news that BBC correspondent Dilawar Wazir’s teenage brother was found murdered in volatile South Waziristan, a tribal-ruled region along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.
According to IFJ affiliate the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) the torture and murder of 16-year-old Taimur Khan, who was kidnapped on Tuesday, may have been to get a “message” to Dilawar who has been under threat for the past two years for his reporting.
“This is a devastating waste of life,” IFJ President Christopher Warren said. “Violence against journalists is shocking and appalling enough, however, when family members of journalists are targeted and brutally murdered it is almost unfathomable.”
The IFJ, the organisation representing more than 500,000 journalists in over 115 countries, joins the PFUJ in its appeal to the Chief Justice of Pakistan, Mr Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, to ensure the authorities find and prosecute those responsible for this atrocious crime.
According to the PFUJ, Wazirstan is the most dangerous area for reporting in Pakistan, and the IFJ supports the PFUJ’s demands for greater insurance and safety assurances for journalists who risk their lives to report from these regions.
“Three journalists have been murdered in Pakistan just this year, and the abduction of journalists seems to be becoming a disturbingly common method for dealing with journalists who report on sensitive topics. This is simply unacceptable,” Warren said.
“The government of Pakistan must intervene in these violent areas to ensure that journalists are protected and those who abduct, harm or murder journalists and those close to them, are brought to justice,” Warren said.
For more information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in 115 countries worldwide