US warns Pakistan on press intimidation
WASHINGTON: The United States has said it would be “a mistake” by the civilian government of Pakistan to follow in the footsteps of the previous Musharraf regime in trying to restrict the press freedom in the country.
“We certainly think it would be a mistake for the Pakistani civilian government to follow the press intimidation that was present during its predecessor,” State Department spokesman P J Crowley said when asked about the recent developments in Pakistan in this regard. Two TV stations — Geo TV and ARY stations were shut down in parts of Sindh province, including Karachi after the news channels’ reports angered supporters of the Pakistani President. Crowley, however, was quick to take at the Pakistani press, a section of which has been consistently raising anti- US passion inside Pakistan as was reflected during the Kerry- Lugar Bill, which gives it USD 7.5 billion in five years. “We ourselves, who have been to Pakistan, have witnessed and interacted with the most vibrant media that exist anywhere in the world. The Pakistani press is very aggressive. We recognise that the dynamism that we do see in Pakistani society, that a vibrant and free press contributes significantly to that,” he said.
Source: The Nation