WASHINGTON: A media advocacy group, the Comm­ittee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), has said that journalists in Pakistan are under siege and asked the government to ensure their safety.

The statement followed two recent killings in Pakis­tan. On Sunday, a local television reporter Hafeezur Rehman was killed in Kohat. On Nov 3, Zaman Mehsud, a print journalist, was shot dead in Tank.

Also read-editorial: Killing of journalist

“Journalists in Pakistan, especially in the northwest, are under siege,” said Bob Dietz, CPJ’s Asia programme coordinator. “If the government in Islamabad cannot bring justice in such cases, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa authorities must step in to address the impunity with which journalists are killed.”

Mr Dietz noted that journalists were victimised by all sides in Pakistan’s internal conflicts and were desperate to find safe havens from attackers. “It is the government’s responsibility to come to their aid. Despite all the killings over the years, that has not happened,” he added.

Published in Dawn, November 25th, 2015

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