US Secretary of State Antony Blinken remarked on World Press Freedom Day that constraint on freedom of expression harm Pakistan’s image and capacity to prosper.
This comes after the International Federation of Journalists listed Pakistan as the fifth most dangerous country for journalists to work in (IFJ).
Blinken brought up the subject of considerable limitations on media outlets and civil society in Pakistan during a press conference on Tuesday. He further stated that similar issues are brought up by the US in its discussions with Pakistani counterparts.
However, US Secretary of State John Kerry stated that they will bring the issue of crimes in their discussions with Pakistani counterparts. This is a feature of their annual Human Rights Reports, and they’re well aware of considerable restrictions on media outlets and civil society in Pakistan in general
According to media reports, 138 journalists died in the line of duty in the country between 1990 and 2020.
Blinken further stated that “Again, a strong free press and an informed population are critical for any nation’s future success, including Pakistan’s, and I believe the behaviors we’re seeing are undermining freedom of expression. They sabotage peaceful protests. They smear Pakistan’s image and hinder its potential to prosper. As a result, it’s something that comes up in both our direct engagements and our day-to-day job “
Pakistan is still one of the top ten countries in the world where predators of journalists and media go unpunished. Journalists suffer a variety of dangers, including physical assaults, kidnappings, enforced disappearances, imprisonment, and torture, in addition to lethal attacks.