PFUJ seeks support for journalists in Malakand
ISLAMABAD, May 11: Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) has expressed concern over the working conditions faced by mediapersons in the volatile Malakand Division which has virtually forced them to give up their professional assignments.
In a statement issued here on Monday, PFUJ said publications of five daily newspapers had ceased; dozens of print and electronic mediapersons left their offices and houses due to the situation.
The PFUJ Secretary General, Shamsul Islam Naz, said the journalists had shifted to safer districts in wake of threats to their lives.
The journalists in the troubled areas like Swat, Buner and Dir are also under threats and several mediapersons in Swat came under indiscriminate firing by unknown people, while others suffered from loss of property as their vehicles were damaged and houses robbed.
The worsened law and order situation in Swat has resulted in closure of daily Azadi, daily Khabarkar, daily Chand, daily Salam and daily Shumal, which used to publish from Mingora.
Besides, the house of a Peshawar-based journalist Islamuddin Sajid was looted by unknown persons in Maidan area of district Dir Lower.
“In Buner too, a team of journalists covering the area came under severe attack resulting in serious injuries to a correspondent of a private television channel.”
The PFUJ called upon the government and fellow organisations of the world to support the affected journalists.
The statement said the situation in the affected areas was not conducive for effective reporting and no journalist was present in Swat to report on human sufferings in the valley. “Only ISPR operating under the command of the army is there to give its own version of the situation.”
The PFUJ also demanded that the government should provide protection to the journalists so that they could go back to Swat.