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Local TV station in Punjab attacked; journalist assaulted and seriously injured

(RSF/IFEX) - Reporters Without Borders firmly condemns an attack on 17 June 2008 on Kook TV, a local station based in Multan, in the east-central province of Punjab, by about 60 people who stormed into its offices, assaulted one of its journalists, seriously injuring him, and inflicted about 1 million rupees (approx. 10,000 euros) in damage to equipment.

Kook TV editor in chief Zubair Naseer told Reporters Without Borders: "Individuals driving motorcycles and cars ransacked the offices and attacked general news reporter Mazhar Mahay, breaking his nose and arm." The station had been receiving threats for several weeks about a weekly programme Mahay works on. "In this programme, people whose voices are not normally heard are able to make themselves heard," Naseer said. It was the first attack of this scale on a TV station since a PPP-led government took over in March.

Naseer criticised the police for arresting only two of the attackers and for failing to carry out an investigation. "We are not satisfied with the performance of the police," he said. "We do not know who is influencing the authorities, but it is evident that the law enforcement agency is not up to the task."

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