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Blog   |   Afghanistan, Pakistan

Seeking release of Pakistani journalist Faizullah Khan, jailed in Afghanistan

People buy garments ahead of the Eid al-Fitr holiday in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Thursday. (AP/Mohammad Sajjad)

It's not often that CPJ agrees with the Pakistan government, but here is one of the rare occasions when we do. While Pakistan journalists have been pushing for quite a while for the release of one of their colleagues, Faizullah Khan, being held in Nangahar in Afghanistan, the Islamabad government has apparently been working diplomatic back channels. But Thursday, Pervez Rashid, Pakistan's minister for information, went public. He urged Afghanistan's leader to issue a presidential pardon. "I appeal to Afghan President Hamid Karzai to use his powers," to pardon Khan, Rashid said in a press conference in capital Islamabad. He also said the government will pursue his release through legal channels.

Alerts   |   Afghanistan, Pakistan

Pakistani reporter sentenced to 4-year prison term in Afghanistan

New York, July 14, 2014--A Pakistani television journalist was convicted on charges of travelling to Afghanistan without travel documents and sentenced to four years in prison, Pakistani officials said on Sunday. He had initially been accused of spying by Afghan authorities, according to news reports.

July 14, 2014 4:12 PM ET

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Blog   |   Pakistan

Mission Journal: Hope in Pakistan

For the last decade, Pakistan has been one of the world's most dangerous countries for the media. At least 46 journalists have been killed, 24 of them murdered for the "crime" of covering the intelligence services, the Taliban, separatists in Baluchistan, or the criminal underworld. The result is a legacy of self-censorship and fear among the Pakistan press; critical stories go unreported. 

Statements   |   Afghanistan

Afghan journalist among those dead in Kabul attack

New York, March 21, 2014--The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply saddened by an attack on Thursday night in Afghanistan in which Sardar Ahmad, a senior reporter for Agence France-Presse's Kabul bureau, was killed. Four gunmen stormed the Serena Hotel in Kabul during Nowruz celebrations, which marks the start of the Afghan and Persian new year. The assailants killed nine, including Ahmad, members of his family including his wife and two children; a former Paraguayan diplomat visiting the country to observe elections; and foreign nationals from Canada, India, New Zealand, and Pakistan, according to news reports. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, the reports said.

Alerts   |   Afghanistan, Sweden, UK

British-Swedish journalist shot dead in Afghan capital

Nils Horner (AFP)

New York, March 11, 2014--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns today's fatal shooting of an international journalist in Afghanistan's capital, Kabul, and calls on authorities to ensure the perpetrators are held responsible. The shooting comes amid mounting risks for foreigners in Kabul. 

Two unidentified men approached Nils Horner, 51, in Kabul's diplomatic district this morning, according to a New York Times report citing Col. Najibullah Samsour, a senior police official. One of the assailants shot Horner in the head at close range, and then both men fled the scene, the report said.

Attacks on the Press   |   Afghanistan

Afghan Journalists Steadfast as International Withdrawal Approaches

As they look toward the next era of uncertainty, reporters in Afghanistan express a sense of determination to build on what they have achieved. By Bob Dietz

An Afghan man marks his application for voter registration in Kabul, Afghanistan, on September 16, 2013. Journalists' future may hinge on the presidential election scheduled for April 2014. (AP/Rahmat Gul)
An Afghan man marks his application for voter registration in Kabul, Afghanistan, on September 16, 2013. Journalists' future may hinge on the presidential election scheduled for April 2014. (AP/Rahmat Gul)

Alerts   |   Pakistan

Three media workers killed in attack on Express TV van

New York, January 17, 2014--Pakistani authorities must conduct an efficient and thorough investigation into today's attack on an Express TV van in which three media workers were killed and a cameraman injured, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. This is the third attack in six months on the Express Media Group.

Blog   |   Pakistan, UK

In London, echoes of Pakistan's deadly press policies

Among the more 200,000 Pakistanis living in London is Altaf Hussain, leader of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement. This powerful political party is widely thought to be behind the murder of reporter Wali Khan Babar, a rising star at Geo TV who was shot dead in Karachi in 2011. His coverage focused on politically sensitive topics such as extortion, targeted killings, electricity thefts, land-grabbing, and riots.

Reports   |   Pakistan

Roots of Impunity

Introduction

By Bob Dietz

At least 42 journalists have been killed—23 of them murdered—in direct relation to their work in Pakistan in the past decade, CPJ research shows. Not one murder since 2003 has been solved, not a single conviction won. Despite repeated demands from Pakistani and international journalist organizations, not one of these crimes has even been put to a credible trial.

Reports   |   Pakistan

Roots of Impunity

1. The Murder of Wali Khan Babar

On January 13, 2011, Wali Khan Babar, a 28-year-old correspondent for Geo TV, was driving home after covering another day of gang violence in Karachi. Babar was an unusual face on the airwaves: Popular and handsome, he was a Pashtun from Zhob in Baluchistan near the border with Afghanistan. For Geo, it was a rare boon to have a Pashtun in Karachi, and so the station planned to send him abroad for training to become an anchor.

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