PFUJ, KhUJ hold dialogue: Journalists for SOPs implementation -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

PFUJ, KhUJ hold dialogue: Journalists for SOPs implementation

PESHAWAR: Senior journalists at a dialogue Monday stressed the need for adoption and implementation of standard operation procedures (SOPs) at media outlets and proper safety training for the media persons working in the troubled regions.

The dialogue was arranged here under the aegis of Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) and Khyber Union of Journalists (KhUJ). Pervez Shaukat, president PFUJ and Amin Yousaf, secretary general were the guests of honour.

The participants of the meeting offered fateha for the departed soul of Asfandyar Khan, the journalist, who was killed in the June 11 suicide blast in Khyber Super Market here. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Senior Minister Bashir Ahmad Bilour also visited the moot to condole the demise of Asfandyar Khan.

Speaking on the occasion Pervez Shaukat expressed serious concern over the twin blast in Peshawar that killed one journalist among nine other people, while over a hundred including eight journalists were injured.

He said that Asfandyar was the seventh journalists to be killed in 2011 so far. He urged the media persons to be aware of the follow-up blasts and avoid going into a danger, as their life was more important than breaking news.

He blasted at the government for its failure to provide protection to the journalists and conducting proper inquiries into the killings of media people. He said that the PFUJ would stage a sit-in outside parliament house in Islamabad on June 15 to press the government to constitute a judicial inquiry into the killing of Saleem Shehzad under a Supreme Court judge.

“We want end to the target killing of media people. We ask the government to conduct inquiry into all the journalists killed so far and the inquiry reports should be made public besides awarding exemplary punishment to those involved in the killing of media people,” he maintained.

Amin Yousaf said that first they were concerned about working condition and wages of journalists. “Now we are fighting for life,” he added.

He said that they wanted to develop a charter for protection of journalists.

President KhUJ Arshad Aziz Malik, general secretary Yousaf Ali, president Peshawar Press Club Saiful Islam Saifi, general secretary Shahid Hameed, senior journalists Abdullah Jan, Mohammad Riaz, Iqbal Khattak, Shamim Shahid and others also spoke on the occasion.

The speakers said that the most emergent need of the hour was safety and security of journalists. He said there should be SOPs for covering operation, blasts and other such activities. The SOPs should be developed at the earliest and proper strategy should be worked out as how to implement them. The financial constraints in implementing those SOPs should also be addressed, he added.

They urged the government to announce a Shuhada package for the media people on the pattern of police and security forces.
Source: The Nation
Date:6/14/2011