RSF wants ‘every lead probed’ to trace Arshad Sharif’s killers
KARACHI: Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has urged the Pakistani authorities to pursue all leads to trace the killers of journalist Arshad Sharif, who was shot dead in Kenya in October 2022.
In a statement, the organisation said much is yet to be discovered about the killing and offered some recommendations after it retraced Mr Sharif’s movements before his death.
Since the killing, the statement added, the Pakistani government and its commission of enquiry have been criticised for lack of freedom and shedding little light on the circumstances surrounding his death.
Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk, said the case has put at stake the credibility of investigators and civilian institutions in Pakistan.
“Three months after Arshad Sharif’s brutal murder, the mystery surrounding the circumstances of his death is more impenetrable than ever,” he added.
The RSF said it retraced Mr Sharif’s movements during the three months before his murder with the help of official documents and accounts of those close to him.
Based on its research, the RSF offered a set of recommendations to the JIT, probing the murder, to ensure an independent investigation.
It recommended that investigators focus on possible motives for Mr Sharif’s murder which have been neglected.
In addition, it proposed an analysis of TV shows hosted by the journalist, particularly a show broadcast by ARY News on May 31, following which he received the first death threat.
The RSF also recommended reviewing the investigations Mr Sharif was carrying out before leaving Pakistan.
It proposed the governments of Pakistan, the UAE and Kenya sign a memorandum of understanding on cooperation to assure complete freedom to the investigators.
The statement suggested interviewing PTI Chairman Imran Khan regarding his role in the affair, especially his statement that he advised Mr Sharif to leave Pakistan.
ARY News CEO Salman Iqbal should also be interviewed to get important information that may help in the case, the RSF proposed, adding assistance from the UN should be sought to help the investigators.
The statement said Mr Sharif left Pakistan due to death threats and flew to Dubai.