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Pak journo claims to have received serious threats

Last Updated: Friday, December 30, 2011 - 16:13

Islamabad: Senior Pakistani journalist Najam Sethi has claimed that he has received serious threats from
state and non-state actors after he raised questions about the
military`s role in politics.

He said if the threats did not stop, he would be
"compelled" to name the "organisations and officials" who were
responsible for them.

Without naming any intelligence agency, Sethi said during
his show on Geo News channel that the organisation`s
operatives were "in touch with and threatening several other
senior journalists".

The journalists did not speak about the threats before
"because we did not want to destabilise things", he said. "But
the time has come when all of them should come forward and
speak about it publicly."

"This is not the age when intelligence operatives should
be threatening their own civilians. A state within the state
is not acceptable," Sethi said.

Sethi`s remarks that he had been receiving "serious"
threats both from the "non-state and state actors" came a week
after journalist Hamid Mir claimed that he had received
threatening messages from the "security establishment".

Sethi, who is editor-in-chief of the weekly The Friday
Times, has faced problems with the security establishment in
the past too.

He recently spent several months in the US following
reports that he and his family had been receiving threats.
Media advocacy groups say 29 journalists have been
killed in Pakistan in the past five years, and many of them
were targeted for their work.

In May this year, journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad was
abducted and killed in Islamabad, two days after he alleged in
an article that al Qaeda had infiltrated the Pakistan Navy.

Many rights groups and journalists` organisations
accused the Inter-Services Intelligence of involvement in the
incident, a charge that was denied by the spy agency.

PTI

First Published: Friday, December 30, 2011 - 16:13

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