Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists
(PFUJ) in urging Pakistan’s Interior
Minister, Rehman Malik, to request that provincial governments provide status
reports on investigations into attacks against journalists in Pakistan.
“The IFJ calls on Minister Malik and
his provincial counterparts to conduct an urgent appraisal of investigations by
local authorities into the murders of journalists, and to make public a report
stating the progress of such investigations,” IFJ
Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.
The call comes as the PFUJ and its
constituent district unions step up protests at the lack of action to address
an alarming deterioration in the security situation for journalists in the
The PFUJ, an IFJ affiliate, organised
nation-wide demonstrations on May 21 to demand action on the car-bomb murder of
senior tribal journalist Nasrullah Afridi in Peshawar, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, on May
PFUJ president Pervaiz Shaukat, who
led the demonstration in Islamabad,
said he had written to Minister Malik requesting that he seek reports from all
provincial chief secretaries and police chiefs to assess the status of
inquiries into killings of journalists. However, the PFUJ said in a statement
that the federal Government had not yet sought this advice from the provinces.
The demonstrations also voiced
criticism of media owners and their representative bodies for neglecting safety
issues for their personnel. Among demands placed before media owners were the
need for regular safety training for journalists, proper compensation for the
families of those killed and comprehensive insurance coverage for journalists
working in hazardous situations.
In Peshawar, where Afridi lived and worked, the Khyber
Union of Journalists, the Tribal Union of Journalists and the Peshawar Press
Club issued a joint resolution in memory of Afridi before conducting their protest. PFUJ secretary-general
Amin Yousuf joined the Peshawar protest, stressing the need for unity among working journalists in
this hour of acute crisis.
“The IFJ further calls for a
constructive dialogue involving all responsible sides, including media owners and
governments at the provincial and federal levels, to find a way to create more
secure working conditions for journalists,” Park said.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +61 2 9333 0919
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