Editors Guild flays muzzling of press in Pakistan

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New Delhi, Nov 16 (UNI) Editors Guild of India today expressed solidarity with the journalists in Pakistan against the curbs on media freedom imposed after the proclamation of emergency, saying it amounted to a systematic assault on civil liberty and press freedom.

''We protest the foreceful muzzling of press freedom, attacks on judiciary and civil liberty and systematic assaults on justice, democracy, people's conscience and sovereignty,'' Guild President Alok Mehta and Secretary General K S Sachidananda Murthy said in a statement.

''We strongly insist the immediate release of all people arrested on the basis of political conscience, defending human rights and freedom of expression,'' they said.

Guild also urged the Paksitani authorities to immediately withdraw the emergency, end the abuse of police and military powers, punish all violators of human rights and take necessary steps to restore the full structures and practices of democracy, ensuring a free and plural mass media.

''We share Pakistani media's concerns over the present situation and fully support their demand for the immediate withdrawal of the laws that have severely hampered the normal functioning of the print media and forced private television news channels to go off the air,'' the statement said.

UNI

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