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Police officers assault reporter and camera operator

(PPF/IFEX) - A reporter and a cameraman for Dunya TV were assaulted on January 25, 2010, by police officers who were demonstrating to demand an increase in their salaries.

Dunya TV reporter Fareedullah Khan and cameraman Salman Faisal were covering the protest by police outside the chief minister's house in Quetta, the capital city of the southwestern province of Balochistan, when the protesters turned against the media personnel and attacked their vehicles with batons. When Khan got out of his vehicle, the police officers started beating both him and Faisal. Other media personnel who were present rushed to Khan and Faisal's rescue. Khan received an injury to his left eye, while one of Faisal's hands was injured.

Abdul Rehman Achakzai, the general secretary of the Quetta Press Club, told PPF that police tried to stop journalists from reporting on the demonstration because they had assaulted and injured citizens during the protest and they did not want the media to provide coverage of the victims.

Journalists from print and electronic media staged a demonstration outside the Quetta Press Club on January 26 under the auspices of the Balochistan Union of Journalists (BUJ). Addressing the rally, Achakzai and other senior journalists expressed their disappointment that not a single government official has come forward to condemn the police officers' actions.

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