June 03, 2019
Police stormed Jang reporter Shahid Sultan's house in Rawalpindi in the early hours of May 24.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) have strongly criticized the raid and demand justice for the wrongful entry and terrorizing of Shahid Sultan’s family.
According to the police report filed by Shahid Sultan on May 27, at 2.30 am on May 24 police stormed his residence. Shahid’s two young sons had their bedroom door broken, and were brought out of the room at gunpoint by police officers. Shahid was also held at gunpoint.
Shahid Sultan repeatedly asked the officers what they wanted and the reason for the raid. They said they were looking for a woman when Shahid explained that she did not live in the house, the police left saying it was a misunderstanding.
PFUJ strongly condemned the raid on Shahid’s house and said there was no justification for it. Following the raid, two officers who were part of the raid have been suspended, and an FIR (first information report) registered against them.
“Journalists are already under a lot of pressure in Pakistan and facing a lot of issues for doing their job like censorship and threats from different quarters, as well as jobs insecurity and illegal non-payment of salaries. PFUJ demands that the government ensures protection to media personnel and their families from such harassment,” PFUJ President GM Jamali said.
The IFJ said: "Journalists in Pakistan are working in an extremely hostile environment, and incidents such as these only create more fear and intimidation within the media community. We welcome the steps taken to open the FIR, and call on the authorities to ensure a thorough investigation is completed.” – IFJ media release
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