The head of the United Nations agency tasked with defending press freedom today voiced alarm at the number of journalists being killed in Pakistan, and called on authorities to investigate the two most recent murders which occurred last month.
“The number of journalists who are paying with their lives for doing their job in Pakistan is alarming,” the Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova, said in a news release.
Abdul Razaq Gul, a journalist for Express News TV based in Balochistan province, was found dead on 19 May, according to UNESCO. He had been kidnapped while returning home the previous evening, and his body showed signs of torture.
Aurengzeb Tunio was a television reporter for the Sindhi-language Kawaish Television Network in Lalu Ranwak village in Sindh province. Some 20 gunmen are reported to have attacked his office, killing him, his brother and a family friend.
“I urge the authorities to investigate these killings. It is essential for freedom of expression and for good governance that those responsible for the death of journalists be brought to justice,” Ms. Bokova added.
The latest killings bring to 27 the number of journalists and media workers killed in Pakistan since 2002, according to UNESCO.