RSF takes notice of threats to journalist
PARIS, Dec 9: The international journalists’ rights organization Reporters sans Frontieres (RSF) has demanded that France intercede on behalf of a threatened Pakistani journalist during the official visit to Paris of Prime Minister Zafarullah Khan Jamali.
According to RSF spokesman Vincent Brossel, with the arrival in France on an official visit of Prime Minister Zafarullah Khan Jamali, RSF drew the French government’s attention to a campaign of intimidation that has been going on since March against investigative journalist Amir Mir, who was fired as editor of the weekly Independent as a result of pressure from Islamabad.
In a letter to Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin, PM Jamali’s official host, the organization urged him to intercede on Mir’s behalf during the Pakistani prime minister’s visit.
Deputy editor of the Herald, an English-language monthly, Mir told RSF that he feared for his life: “I am now being conveyed friendly messages to leave Pakistan. I am really concerned about the safety of my family.”
The recent acts of intimidation were reported after President Musharraf told a meeting of newspaper editors on Nov 20 that the editors of the Herald and the monthly Newsline had not been invited because they published articles that damaged Pakistan’s international image.
When he was still the weekly Independent’s editor, Mir publicly alleged on March 18 that he had received threats from the Punjab state security minister, a former head of Pakistan’s secret service, the ISI. Mir was forced to resign from this post on June 13 after several months of pressure to change his editorial line