Journalist Found Dead In Sindh After ‘Death Threats’

Senior journalist Aziz Memon was found 16 February 2020 strangulated before his body was thrown into a canal in Naushehro Feroze district in Sindh province triggering strong reaction to demand judicial commission to find out perpetrators of the crime.

Aziz, 57, was working with KTN TV channel and Kawish newspaper – the biggest Sindhi-language media group in Pakistan, was believed threatened for his “Train March Story” he had filed for his organization in 2019 when Pakistan People’s Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari took to train to mobilize public across Sindh province.

Early post-mortem report, according to local journalist Akhlaiq Jokhiyo, found “no signs of torture” on late Aziz Memon’s body.

“We demand of Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to constitute a high-level investigation team to track down the killers of the murdered journalist,” Islamabad-based media rights organization Freedom Network said 18 February 2020 in Freedom Alert to denounce the murder of the journalist.

“Letting Aziz’s killers go scot-free will reinforce deep-rooted impunity for crimes against journalists and media in Pakistan,” the Freedom Alert said, adding that the journalist’s murder should not be used to score political points.

Freedom Network welcomed extensive coverage of the murder of the journalist by national media and debate in the Parliament with demands for Joint Investigation Team to probe the killing. “However, we want that the JIT, if constituted, should probe murder cases of all journalists fell in line of duty in Pakistan,” it said.

Akhlaiq said the body of late Aziz Memon was found floating in a canal in Mehrabpur town in Naushehro Feroze district with cable wire tied around his neck. Late Aziz was in the profession for last 25 years.

According to Akhlaiq, police registered no case yet as it was collecting evidence to reach the culprits. “It is such a sophisticated murder that murderers appear left no traces behind to follow. Many believe Aziz was first murdered and then thrown the body into the canal.

Aziz, according to his wife as local media reported and Akhlaiq also confirmed that the journalist was “under threat” in 2019 and he “moved to Islamabad” for quite some time before returning to home town.

The threat followed his “exclusive report” for his organization alleging that organizers of “Train March” Pakistan People’s Party chairman Bilawal Zardari Bhutto led last year to protest the federal government’s policies. The party denies any involvement.

Mustafa Jarwar, Director News at KTN TV channel, confirmed 17 February 2010 that the journalist “did receive threat” last year for his “Train March” report and that he had moved to Islamabad on “security ground.”

“I cannot say much at the moment as police asked for two days to collect all evidence before reaching any conclusion and identifying suspects,” he said, adding that the journalist “did not report any security issue or threats for the last six months” as his previous safety and security issue was settled down.

Local journalists held demonstrations in Naushahro Feroze, Moro, Mehrabpur, Padidan, Darya Khan Marri and other towns of Naushahro Feroze districts to protest the murder of Aziz Memom demanding immediate arrest of his killers.

 

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