Resolution in Pakistan Attempts to Undermine Media Freedom

A resolution passed by a provincial parliament in Pakistan is a crude attempt to

silence journalists and will fail, according to the International

Federation of Journalists (IFJ).

 

The Punjab Assembly passed a resolution on July 9 condemning the role of the

media and accusing it of “irresponsible behaviour” following coverage of fake

degrees held by members of parliament, according to media reports.

 

The resolution, which was passed

unanimously by the assembly, said some media coverage was being used as

political propaganda, leading to public representatives being maligned, according

to the reports.

 

The IFJ joined its affiliate, the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists

(PFUJ), in demanding the resolution be withdrawn.

 

“This resolution by the Punjab Assembly is extremely worrying to the IFJ as

it shows a total disregard for the media’s crucial role in reporting important

matters relating to good governance in Pakistan,” IFJ General Secretary Aidan White said.

 

“It would be a sensible move for Pakistan’s members of parliament who

have concerns about media content to engage in dialogue with journalists and the

media rather than use their assemblies to condemn the professional practices of

journalists reporting in the public interest.”

 

The PFUJ called for demonstrations

against the resolution, and protest rallies were held by district unions

of journalists in numerous cities and towns including Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Karachi, Sukkur, Peshawar and Quetta.

 

For further

information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific

on +612 9333 0919

 

The IFJ

represents more than 600,000 journalists in 125 countries