IFJ delegation meets President, terms media environment forward-looking


Rawalpindi : A three-member fact-finding mission of the International Federation of Journalists met President Pervez Musharraf Saturday and termed the media environment in the country as “forward-looking”.Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary who is leading the delegation told the President that the expansion and openness of media will have a positive impact on democracy.

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The Brussels-based International Federation of Journalists is the world’s largest organisation of mediapersons.

President Musharraf during his recent four-nation visit to Europe had invited the IFJ to Pakistan to see for themselves the ground reality about freedom of media in the country.

Aiden White termed his visit to Pakistan as “productive” and said he found that media in the country was enjoying freedom.

“I see openness and optimism in Pakistan, which has been encouraged by you,” White told President Musharraf while acknowledging his contribution for freedom of press in the past eight years.

He also spoke about the issues of safety and security of the journalists and the need for having a national dialogue on ethical journalism.

President Musharraf agreed with the delegation on the need for a dialogue on ethical journalism in the country and said it was a vital requirement.

The President said despite various issues, he would continue to look forward to openness and freedom of expression as he believed that it will have a positive impact on democracy in the country.

The other two members of delegation included Sunanda Deshapriya from Sri Lanka. He also represents International News Safety Institute and Mike Dobbie, from the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance in Australia.

First established in 1926, the Federation represents around 600,000 members in more than 120 countries.