World Association of News Publishers

Protest Campaign - Pakistan, 28 February 2011

Protest Campaign - Pakistan, 28 February 2011

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His Excellency Asif Ali Zardari
President of Pakistan

28 February 2011

Your Excellency,

We are writing on behalf of the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and the World Editors Forum, which represent 18,000 publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than 120 countries, to express our serious concern at the murder of journalist Abdost Rind in Balochistan province.

According to reports, on the evening of 18 February Mr Rind, a reporter with the Urdu-language Daily Eagle in the Turbat area of Balochistan, was shot four times by unidentified attackers on motorcycles as he returned home from work. He died immediately. He is the second media worker to be killed in Balochistan this year, after the death of Ilyas Nazar, who was found dead in Pidarak on 5 January. Although no motive for Mr Rind’s murder has yet been established, his family claims that it was related to his work.

Sixteen journalists and media workers were reportedly murdered in Pakistan last year, six of whom were killed in Balochistan. We are seriously concerned that Pakistan remains one of the most dangerous countries in the world in which to be a journalist. Furthermore, we are alarmed at the culture of impunity that surrounds attacks on journalists, which stifles criticism and can lead to self-censorship. We respectfully remind you that it is the duty of the state to provide an environment in which journalists are able to carry out their professional duties without fear of violence.

We call on you to take all necessary steps to ensure that a thorough investigation into the murder of Mr Rind is carried out and that those responsible are quickly brought to justice. We ask you to do everything in your power to end the culture of impunity that exists in Pakistan and to ensure that in future your country fully respects international standards of press freedom.

We look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience.

Yours sincerely,

Gavin O’Reilly
World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers

Erik Bjerager
World Editors Forum

cc His Excellency Aneesuddin Ahmed, Pakistani Ambassador to France


WAN-IFRA is the global organisation for the world’s newspapers and news
publishers, with formal representative status at the United Nations,
UNESCO and the Council of Europe. The organization groups 18,000
publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than
120 countries.


Andrew Heslop's picture

Andrew Heslop


2011-03-04 01:00

Media employees worldwide face physical violence and persecution of all kinds, whether from public officials, criminals or terrorists. Assaults are daily - and often deadly - for those who challenge governments, report on conflicts or investigate corruption and crime. Read more ...

In countless countries, journalists, editors and publishers are physically attacked, imprisoned, censored, suspended or harassed for their work. WAN-IFRA is committed to defending freedom of expression by promoting a free and independent press around the world. Read more ...