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Pakistan ‘devising mechanism to protect journalists’

Sunday 16 Oct 2011
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani says the government is devising an institutional mechanism to protect journalists from violence and threats, the Daily Times reports.

Yousaf Raza Gilani

“It is the top priority of the government to resolve the problems of the working journalists,” Mr Gilani said at the concluding session of a conference in Islamabad entitled ‘Attacks on Journalists and Freedom of Media’.

The government desired that journalists should express their opinion without fear or favour and it would continue to improve the working conditions of media persons, he said.

“Since the PPP-led government believes in the empowerment of people, we will ensure that citizens’ right to know is preserved at all costs,” he said.

“We have never believed in the culture of press advice, censorship and control of content or information and all of you are witness to the fact that the democratic government has never stifled media freedom.”

Mr Gilani said the government was providing maximum facilities to journalists especially in the form of grants in aid and financial assistance to press clubs and journalists.

In the case of journalists falling victim to terrorism, he said the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting provided financial assistance to the families of the victims, including funds for the education of their children.

He said the government would not spare anyone who was involved in the killing of media persons.