Alarming surge in attacks on journalists in Pakistan has shocked the media community in the country
More than 100 journalists from around the world have urged the Pakistani government to end impunity and to take action against those who attack, harass and intimidate them.
Journalists and Fellows at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University have condemned the assassination attempt on Absar Islam, solidarity with Absar Alam, a senior journalist and former Chairman of Pakistan Media Regulatory Authority, who survived an armed attack in April this year.
“We Nieman Fellows around the world condemn the assassination attempt on our colleague Absar Alam, Nieman Fellow 2005,” the journalists said in a statement issued on Tuesday.
Absar Alam was attacked by an armed assailant while he was walking in a park near his home in Islamabad.
“Alam is known for speaking truth to power. The police have yet to arrest the criminals who masterminded the assassination attempt or the attacker,” the statement reads.
An alarming surge in attacks on journalists in Pakistan has shocked the media community in the country and caused concern among journalists everywhere.
In July last year, a senior freelance journalist Matiullah Jan in Islamabad was kidnapped by unidentified men outside his wife’s workplace. They drove him to an unknown place and tortured him. He was later released.
Several incidents of journalists being attacked, tortured, slain, or disappeared in Pakistan have recently been documented by human rights organizations, prompting the government to take action.
The statement says: “We urge the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan to arrest and prosecute the criminals involved in these attacks and kidnappings. The government of Pakistan must ensure the safety of all journalists and eliminate this culture of impunity that has rendered Pakistan one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists.”