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The International Federation of Journalists joins its affiliate the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) in expressing outrage and condemning the killing of journalist Mushtaq Khand, a reporter for privately-owned Dharti TV, during a public meeting organised by the ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) in Khairpur, in the south-eastern province of Sindh, on the evening of October 7.

Mushtaq Khand, a reporter for Dharti Television Network, was covering the PPP meeting when over 10 gunmen opened fire. It is believed that up to seven people were killed and twelve people were injured in the incident, including three journalists – Faheem Mangi , Allah Dad Rind and Mukhtiar Phulpoto, who was shot five times and is now in intensive care in Karachi. Khand had been working as a journalist for the last 10 years and was the standing president of Khairpur Press Club for the past five years.
In a statement, PFUJ President Pervaiz Shaukat expressed his condolences to the families and colleagues of the victims and added that journalists are frequently caught in bomb blasts and attacks while covering events.

The PFUJ has been focussed on the provision of safety trainings to journalists and how to deal with violent situations.  PFUJ Secretary General Amin Yousuf also offered his condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in the attack. “Numerous journalists have lost their lives in the line of duty and Mushtaq Khand is the latest victim in the list,” he said.

President of the Sukkur National Press Club Sarfraz Memon and President of the Sukkur Union of Journalists Irfan Shaikh led a protest, condemning the attack and demanding that the government take action to the arrest the perpetrators.

“We condemn the brutal killing of Mushtaq Khand and extend our condolences to the families and colleagues of the victims. The IFJ stands in solidarity with our colleagues and affiliates in Pakistan and call on Pakistan’s state and federal authorities to immediately conduct a swift and credible investigation into the attack,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.

Pakistan remains among the deadliest countries in the world for journalists.  At least five journalists have been killed in Pakistan this year.

The PFUJ/IFJ published a report on the State of Journalism in Sindh Province, released on World Press Freedom Day 2012.  It is available on the IFJ website here.

Originally published on IFJ Website

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