Media watchdog condemns attack on Pakistani journalist
Islamabad – The international media protection group Reporters Without Borders on Friday condemned the kidnapping and beating of a Pakistani journalist by alleged intelligence operatives for his coverage of a missing persons case. Pakistani ARY TV reporter Babar Malik was picked up by men in plain clothes using what appeared to be an intelligence agency jeep on August 21 in Islamabad, the Paris-based organization said.
A colleague of the journalist said that before releasing him,Malik’s abductors told him: “You may be able to break big stories, but we can break your arms and legs.”
Malik had just reported on the disappearance of Imran Munir, a Pakistani man supposedly held by the military on spying charges. Munir’s family denied the charges and said he was being held for having an affair with an officer’s wife.
Malik has declined to talk about his abduction for fear of reprisals, but ARY TV has filed a complaint.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Sher Afgan Niazi reportedly said he was dismayed that Malik appeared to have been “kidnapped, beaten and threatened” by secret service agents.
Pakistan’s intelligence agencies have come under intense pressure from the Supreme Court in Islamabad to produce scores of missing persons believed to be in their custody.
Often having been held for many months without charge or trial, more than 100 people were presented before the court this year and freed, some of them in a poor health.
Source: Earth Times.org