IFJ Protests Against Murder and Harassment of Journalists in Pakistan

The International Federation of Journalists has sent a letter of protest to the President of Pakistan, voicing its concern over the murder of journalist Mr. Amir Bux Brohi and the unlawful detention of journalists Nasarullah Afridi and Aurangzeb Afridi in the city of Peshawar.


The IFJ have written to the President of Pakistan in the following letter:


7 October 2003


General Pervez Musharraf

President and Chief Executive of Pakistan

Via Email: CE@pak.gov.pk



Dear General Musharraf,


The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the global organisation of journalists representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over the murder of journalist Mr. Amir Bux Brohi and the detention of journalists Nasarullah Afridi and Aurangzeb Afridi in the city of Peshawar.


According to our information, on October 3, three unidentified assailants murdered journalist Mr. Amir Bux Brohi, correspondent of the Sindh Language daily newspaper Kaawish. Mr Brohi was returning from police headquarters in a jeep when unidentified gunmen fired upon him. The attackers fled the scene after shooting Mr Brohi. Mr Amir Bux Brohi was shot five times, twice in the shoulders and was rushed to the Shikarpur Civil Hospital by police, where he died from his injuries.


Mr Brohi was known for his investigative reports on the Karo-Kari, an old custom of murdering women for independently choosing their husbands or lovers.


To date the Police Department has not been able to make an arrest connected to the murder.


In a separate incident, journalists, Nasarullah Afridi and Aurangzeb Afridi, correspondents for the Urdu language daily newspapers Mashriq and Subah Morning, from the city of Peshawar in North Western Frontier Province adjacent to Afghanistan, were detained in a private prison for several hours on September 18, 2003.


According to our information, the two journalists were held captive in a private prison by the Unity of Ulemas organisation (Tanzeem Ittehad Ulema), an outlawed fundamentalist group. Both of them were released after several hours due to external pressure from influential individuals.


Once released the journalists were summoned to a meeting with the Tanzeem Ittehad Ulema, however they did not attend. The journalists have since received warnings to fear for their lives if they don’t give up the idea of a free press in the Khyber Agency.


The IFJ is requesting that the Government of Pakistan launch a full investigation into both of these incidents and ensure that those who are responsible are brought to justice.


The IFJ reminds the Government of Pakistan that violence is the worst form of censorship and that journalists must be free to work without fear of violence or reprisal.


Yours sincerely,



Christopher Warren

President, IFJ


CC. Mr. Shaikh Rasheed

Minister of Information

Government of Pakistan


Via Email: Infominister@pak.gov.pk


CC. Mr. Anwer Mahmood

Secretary Information

Government of Pakistan


Via Email: minform@isb.comsats.net.pk


CC. Mr. Sattar Lalika

Minister of Labour

Government of Pakistan


Via Email: seclab58@hotmail.com


Recommended action:


Send appeals:


  • Condemning the murder of journalist Mr. Amir Bux Brohi

  • Condemming the unlawful detainment of journalists Nasarullah Afridi and Aurangzeb Afridi

  • Urging the Government of Pakistan to launch a full investigation into these two incidents

  • Urging the Government to ensure the safety of all journalists working in Pakistan.


    Appeals:


    General Pervez Musharraf

    President and Chief Executive of Pakistan


    Via Email: CE@pak.gov.pk


    For more information please contact Jacqui Park at ifj-asia@alliance.org.au


    Please copy appeals to the IFJ Asia Office at ifj-asia@alliance.org.au