Pakistan - Journalist killed in Swat valley suicide bombing, another journalist hospitalised



    MONTREAL, March 3 /CNW Telbec/ - Siraj Uddin, a correspondent of the
English-language newspaper The Nation, was one of the at least 40 people who
were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up at the funeral of a slain
police officer on 29 February in Mingora, a city in North-West Frontier
Province's troubled Swat valley that has been under a curfew since the start
of the year. No organisation has claimed responsibility for the attack on the
funeral, which was being attended by about 800 people. Some 80 people were
wounded by the blast, including Hazrat Bilal, a journalist working for the
local press who sustained multiple injuries. He is now in hospital, where his
condition is stable.
    "We condemn these acts of devastating and indiscriminate violence to
which the civilian population is exposed," Reporters Without Borders said.
    "Uddin is the second journalist to be killed in Pakistan since the start
of January, after a particularly grim year in which six journalists were
killed. Other thoughts are with his family and colleagues and we hope Bilal
makes a complete recovery."

    Pakistan was ranked 152nd out of 169 countries in the 2007 Reporters
Without Borders world press freedom index.




For further information:

For further information: Katherine Borlongan, secretary general,
Reporters Without Borders, (514) 521-4111, Cell: (514) 258-4208, Fax: (514)
521-7771, rsfcanada@rsf.org

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