Islamabad, Dec 26 (AP/UNB) — Pakistani journalists, who have taken on military dictators and been beaten and jailed in the pursuit of a free press, say they now face a form of censorship that is more subtle but no less chilling, one spearheaded by the security services.
Journalists and press freedom advocates say the military and the powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency, or ISI, are pressuring media outlets to quash critical coverage. The newly elected government is meanwhile slashing its advertising budget, squeezing a key source of revenue for private newspapers and TV stations.
Websites have been shut down, and authorities are also targeting social media, asking Twitter to suspend accounts and Facebook to take down pages.
The government denies cracking down on press freedoms, saying it only acts to prevent incitement to violence.