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CEO: Afghan media achievements ‘irreversible’

CEO: Afghan media achievements ‘irreversible’

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On
May 02, 2017 - 21:42

KABUL (Pajhwok): CEO Abdullah Abdullah on Tuesday said media achievements in Afghanistan were irreversible and the unity government would always support media organizations

Abdullah, who addressed an event marking World Press Freedom Day in Kabul,  said media victories recent past had been unprecedented, saying the achievements belonged to the Afghan nation.

He said the Afghan journalists braved threats and faced challenges in the line of duty.
“You are the linking bridge between the people and the government.”

“We cannot call the environment the media is working in as favorable,” the CEO said, pledging unwavering support to media outlets.

He said the media achievements in Afghanistan were irreversible and the Afghan people with their sacrifices were proud of the gains including the right to citizenship, right to vote, freedom of press and speech.

Fahim Dashti, the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) executive head, also spoke on the occasion. He said the joint committee for journalists security led by 2nd VP Sarwar Danish had no achievement so far. He said the panel was yet to hold a meeting during the past one month.

He claimed powerful individuals used to threaten journalists who were generally threatened and killed by terrorist groups, drug-traffickers and government forces.

Dashti said the government had failed to investigate murder cases of journalists. He said 16 journalists were killed in 2016 and two this year so far.

He said so far only one or two cases of slain journalists had been looked into and the investigation process had been extremely slow. He said committees tasked with investigating murder cases had ignored the cases which they refer to each other.

Meanwhile, Sayed Aqa Hussain, deputy publications minister at the Ministry of Culture and Information, congratulated media organizations on celebrating the World Press Freedom Day.

“We have carried out some activities to provide better work environment to journalists and some other activities like the setting up of the joint committee for journalists’ safety led by the 2nd VP are underway.”

He also said a fresh team had been hired at Bakhtar News Agency of the Ministry of Information and Culture (MoIC). The team recorded all incidents and media events in the capital and provinces.

Meanwhile, MoIC and the Afghanistan Journalists’ Council also celebrated the World Press Freedom Day, asking the government to further support the media community in Afghanistan. The World Press Freedom Day is celebrated every May 3.   

Sayed Kamal Sadat, deputy youth affairs minister, said it was the government’s responsibility to protect the media achievements.

However, he expressed concern over what he said improper use of social media in Afghanistan. He said the MoIC was working on a procedure to ensure social media networks were used in good way and abuse and insulting of people and misuse of the social media prevented.

Hafizullah Barakzai, the Afghanistan Journalists’ Council head, said quantitative and qualitative growth of the media in the past 14 years was main achievement of the new political system of Afghanistan.

In the past 15 years, 66 Afghan and foreign reporters have been killed in Afghanistan and many others wounded, but unfortunately the judicial organs investigated none of them, Barakzai said.

He said the government seemed unable to implement the law on access to information as journalists struggled with issues in this regard.

sns/ma