Dire Conditions and Insecurity Confront Balochistan Journalists

Journalists

and media workers operating in Balochistan,

Pakistan’s largest

province, operate in an extremely difficult and tense environment. A persistent

long-running separatist movement in the province is focused on securing local

control of the area’s rich natural resources and defending the identity and

rights of the Baloch community. Even as the province is considered by some as

“Taliban Central”, the province’s difficulties do not attract international headlines

in the same way as insurgencies in North-West Frontier Province and the

Federally Administered Tribal Areas.

 

Yet media

personnel in Balochistan contend with alarmingly regular violence and threats

as a consequence of their work, leading to widespread self-censorship. The

difficulties are compounded by a historic failure to provide adequate

professional training for local media personnel, the unwillingness of media

proprietors to pay reasonable wages and support the safety of their workers,

and a related attitude among some that media work is not a profession but

merely a means to secure financial or political benefits by other means.

 

The

attached report was commissioned by the International Federation of

Journalists (IFJ), in alliance with its affiliate, the Pakistan Federal Union

of Journalists (PFUJ), to assess the situation on the ground for journalists working

in an area from which little information is usually available.

 

See

091109 Balochistan report FINAL.pdf

 

 

For further

information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific

on +612 9333 0919

 

The IFJ represents

over 600,000 journalists in 120 countries