PAKISTAN'S REPORT UNDER THE UNIVERSAL PERIODIC REVIEW by PPF – On Freedom of Expression -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

PAKISTAN’S REPORT UNDER THE UNIVERSAL PERIODIC REVIEW by PPF – On Freedom of Expression

Introduction

Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) is an independent media research, documentation and training centre working to promote and defend freedom of press.

Pakistan UPR Report

At least 42 journalists have been killed in the line of duty in Pakistan in last ten years and 29 of them deliberately targeted and murdered because of their work. In 2011 alone, seven journalists were killed in the country. For every journalist who has been deliberately targeted and murdered, there are many others who have been injured, threatened and coerced into silence.

Pakistani journalists are killed, unjustly detained, abducted, beaten and threatened by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, militants, tribal and feudal lords, as well as, some political parties that claim to promote democracy and the rule of law. Sadly, the perpetrators of violence against journalists and media workers enjoy almost absolute impunity in Pakistan.

Of the 42 journalists killed in the line of duty during these 10 years, 11 were from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, nine from Federally Administrated Tribal Agencies (FATA), eight each from Balochistan and Sindh, four from Punjab and two from the federal capital, Islamabad.

Of the 29 journalists murdered since the year 2002 because of their work, nine were from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, six from Balochistan, five from FATA, six from Sindh, two from Punjab and one from Islamabad. Seventeen of them were shot; six targeted in suicide attacks, one killed in a bomb blast, while eight abducted before murder.

Because of the Afghanistan war and the so-called war on terror, areas bordering Afghanistan – Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and FATA – are the most dangerous for journalists.

Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) recommends the following steps to control the alarming rise in violence against media, and to end impunity for those who attack journalists and media workers:

1. Criminal cases should be registered, investigated and prosecuted against the perpetrators of violence against media.
2. An independent commission comprising professional media organisations, CSOs, press freedom and human rights organisations and professional bodies of lawyers should be established for monitoring criminal investigations and legal follow-up of cases of violence and intimidation of journalists.
3. Local, national and international print, electronic and online media should ensure long-term follow-up of cases of assault on media organisations and workers
4. Journalists should be provided with safety and first aid trainings and guidance on how to report in hostile environment. Journalists working in conflict areas should also be provided with guidance in recognizing and dealing with stress and post-traumatic stress.
5. Safety equipments including bulletproof jackets and medical kits should be given to journalists covering the conflicts.
6. Threats and attacks can be reduced to some extent by adopting a professional approach and impartial and unbiased reporting. Journalists, especially those in rural areas, should be imparted trainings on writing skills, language proficiency, editing and interviewing techniques to enhance their capabilities.
7. Employers should provide journalists life and medical insurance and also compensation in case of death or injury related to their work. As Pakistani journalists are victims of circumstances that are both local and global in nature, the government should also compensate to the families of journalists, killed in the line of duty.
8. Proper medical treatment, including treatment abroad, should be provided to media workers who have been subjected to violence.
9. In addition to compensation by employers and government, funds should be set up for families of journalists who had been murdered or injured. These funds could be operated by the immediate families of the victimized journalists.
10. There is need to for media organisations to develop ‘operating procedures’ with law enforcement agencies that will allow journalists to cover the conflict situations with greater safety.
11. Arrangements should be made in all major cities to provide refuge and safe houses for the journalists who are forced to leave their homes so that they can live and work in safer cities.
12. Media organisations should interact with all stakeholders including government departments, political parties and groups and security agencies to develop strategies that promote safety of journalists and other media workers.
13. Employers should give journalists facing threats the option of transferring them to safer cities for extended periods of time. The remunerations during these periods should be based on the actual living expenses in these cities, which are generally higher than rural areas.
14. At times, insensitive and misinformed editors push their reporters and photojournalists into the situations where they have to put their life and well-being at risk for getting the stories. There is a need to create awareness and sensitizing the owners of the media organizations, as well as, those who are working on desk to realize the ground realities and threats being faced by the journalists working in fields especially in conflict areas.
15. Some international media organisations do provide proper safety trainings and equipment to their correspondents; however, journalists working for international media organisations as stringers or on freelance basis in remote areas of FATA, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan do not receive adequate training or support. As reporting for international media carries greater risk for these stringers, these organisations should provide security training and support, as well as, life and medical insurance for their stringers and freelancers working in conflict area.

 

List of Journalists Killed in Pakistan from January 2002 to November 2011

Date of Attack

Name of Journalist

Organisation

City

Province/Region

Category

1

5-Nov-11

Javed Naseer Rind

Daily Tawar

Khuzdar

Balochistan

Abduction and Murder

2

11-Jun-11

Asfandyar Abid Naveed

Daily Akhbar-e-Khyber

Peshawar

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Suicide Blast

3

11-Jun-11

Shafiullah Khan

Daily The News

Peshawar

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Suicide Blast

4

30-May-11

Saleem Shahzad

Asia Times Online

Islamabad

Federal Capital Area

Abduction and Murder

5

10-May-11

Nasrullah Khan Afridi

Daily Mashriq, Daily Statesman

Peshawar

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Murder

6

13-Jan-11

Wali Khan Babar

Geo TV

Karachi

Sindh

Murder

7

14-Dec-10

Mohammad Khan Sasoli

Daily Balochistan Times

Khuzdar

Balochistan

Murder

8

6-Dec-10

Pervez Khan

Waqt TV

Ghalanai

FATA

Suicide Blast

9

6-Dec-10

Abdul Wahab

Daily Express News

Ghalanai

FATA

Suicide Blast

10

18-Nov-10

Lala Hameed Hayatan

Daily Tawar

Gawadar

Balochistan

Abduction and Murder

11

17-Sep-10

Mujeebur Rehman Siddiqui

Daily Pakistan

Dargai

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Murder

12

14-Sep-10

Misri Khan

Daily Ausaf, Daily Mashriq

Hangu

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Murder

13

6-Sep-10

Ejaz Raisani

Samaa TV

Quetta

Balochistan

Crossfire

14

27-Jun-10

Faiz Muhammad Sasoli

Daily Aaj Kal

Khuzdar

Balochistan

Murder

15

28-May-10

Ejazul Haq

City-42 TV

Lahore

Punjab

Crossfire

16

10-May-10

Ghulam Rasool Birhamani

Daily Sindhu

Wahi Pandhi

Sindh

Abduction and Murder

17

17-Apr-10

Azamat Ali Bangash

Samaa TV

Orakzai

FATA

Suicide Blast

18

16-Apr-10

Malik Arif

Samaa TV

Quetta

Balochistan

Suicide Blast

19

24-Aug-09

Janullah Hashimzada

Shamshad TV

Jamrud

FATA

Murder

20

18-Feb-09

Musa Khankhel

Geo TV, The News

Swat

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Murder

21

23-Jan-09

Amir Wakeel

Daily Awami Inqalab

Rawalpindi

Punjab

Murder

22

4-Jan-09

Tahir Saleem Awan

freelance

Dera Ismail Khan

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Targeted in a suicide Blast

23

4-Jan-09

Mohammad Imran

Express TV

Dera Ismail Khan

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Targeted in a suicide blast

24

3-Nov-08

Abdul Razzak Johra

Royal TV

Mianwali

Punjab

Murder

25

29-Aug-08

Abdul Aziz Shaheen

Daily Azadi

Swat

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Abduction and Murder

27

22-May-08

Khadim Hussain Sheikh

Sindh TV, Daily Khabrain

Hub

Balochistan

Murder

26

22-May-08

Mohammed Ibrahim

Express TV and Daily Express

Khar

FATA

Murder

28

29-Feb-08

Siraj Uddin

The Nation

Mingora

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Targeted in a Suicide Blast

29

9-Feb-08

Chishti Mujahid

Weekly Akbar-e-Jehan

Quetta

Balochistan

Murder

30

23-Nov-07

Zubair Ahmed Mujahid

Daily Jang

Mirpurkhas

Sindh

Murder

31

19-Oct-07

Muhammad Arif

ARY One World TV

Karachi

Sindh

Suicide Blast

32

3-Jul-07

Javed Khan

Daily Markaz

Islamabad

Federal Capital Area

Crossfire

33

2-Jun-07

Noor Hakim Khan

Daily Pakistan

Bajaur

FATA

Crossfire

34

28-Apr-07

Mehboob Khan

freelance

Charsadda

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Crossfire

35

16-Jun-06

Hayatullah Khan

freelance

Miran Shah

FATA

Abduction and Murder

36

29-May-06

Munir Ahmed Sangi

Kawish Television Network (KTN)

Larkana

Sindh

Crossfire

37

7-Feb-05

Allah Noor

Khyber TV

Wana

FATA

Murder

38

7-Feb-05

Amir Nawab

Associated Press Television News, Daily The Frontier Post

Wana

FATA

Murder

39

29-Jan-04

Sajid Tanoli

Daily Shumal

Mansehra

Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa

Murder

40

3-Oct-03

Ameer Bux Brohi

Daily Kawish

Kandhkot

Sindh

Murder

41

20-Oct-02

Shahid Soomro

Daily Kawish

Kandhkot

Sindh

Murder

42

2002

Daniel Pearl

The Wall Street Journal

Karachi

Sindh

Abduction and Murder

 

Community Radio in Pakistan

The legal framework for broadcasting regulation is set out in the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) Ordinance 2002, as amended by PEMRA Amendment Act, 2007. One of the principal purposes of the ordinance is to facilitate the devolution of the power to the grassroots by improving the access of the people to mass media at the local and community level.

Furthermore, Section 18, titled “Categories of licences” sets out the categories under which PEMRA is to issue licences, including: international and national scale stations; provincial scale broadcast; local area or community-based radio and TV broadcast.

The Ordinance further defines the bodies eligible to hold a licence as including any individual, partnership, association, company, trust or corporation, with the following exclusions in Section 25. (a) a person who is not a citizen or resident of Pakistan; (b) a company whose majority of shares are owned by foreign government; (c) a company whose majority of shares are owned by foreign nationals; (d) any person funded or sponsored by foreign government or organization.

Recommendations for Community Radio in Pakistan:

  1. Licences should be provided to the community radios by Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority on rapid basis.
  2. Trainings, technical upgrades and the improvement of outside broadcast facilities should be provided to local FM radios to continue their work in providing information and voice for poor and needy.
  3. Need to develop the local networks of community correspondents among the rural areas.
  4. Policies should be framed in consultation with media professionals.
  5. Professional staff should be hired.
  6. Radio studios should be established in press clubs.
  7. Radio stations should be engaged with PEMRA to develop a policy to promote the rapid growth of community radio throughout Pakistan.
  8. Members of different political and community groups should be interviewed; their ideas should be heard directly by audiences.
  9. Community Radios can protect the concerns of the people by providing more news programmes.

 

Pakistan Press Foundation