According to the study,Islamabad was the riskiest place to practise journalism in Pakistan…reports Asian Lite News
At least 140 cases of threats and attacks against journalists, media professionals and media organisations were reported in Pakistan over the past year, indicating an annual increase of over 60 per cent.
The annual Pakistan Press Freedom Report, prepared by the media rights watchdog Freedom Network, showed that Islamabad was the riskiest place to practise journalism in Pakistan, as 56, or 40 per cent, violations took place in the city, Dawn reported.
Punjab was the second worst, with 35 (25 per cent) cases of violations, followed by 32 (23 per cent) cases in Sindh.
The report, released ahead of the World Press Freedom Day celebrated on May 3, noted that the country’s media environment became riskier and more violent in recent months, as the number of attacks surged 63 per cent to 140 between May 2022 and March 2023 from 86 in 2021-22, Dawn reported.
The report also documented the killings of at least five journalists in Pakistan in the period under review.
“The escalation in violence against journalists is disturbing and demands urgent attention,” said Iqbal Khattak, the executive director of Freedom Network, which tracks press freedom violations around the year and publishes the annual report.
“Attacks on independent journalism block access to essential information, which is especially damaging during the ongoing political and economic crises when the public needs reliable news to understand the issues and respond to them,” he said.
The 140 attacks against journalists in the 11-month period in Pakistan showed that there were 13 cases a month, or a press freedom violation almost every other day.