Accessibility links

Group: US Screening Reporters in Afghanistan

A group representing journalists around the world says the U.S. military is screening reporters who are seeking to enter Afghanistan under the protection of U.S. troops.

The International Federation of Journalists alleged Wednesday that the Pentagon is using a public relations firm to determine how journalists are portraying the U.S. military in their coverage.

The IFJ general secretary, Aidan White, said that such action raises doubt that the U.S. Army is interested in helping journalists work freely in Afghanistan.

A Pentagon spokesman said the U.S. military previously used a contractor to deal with journalists, but only to determine the reporters' interests as they sought to enter the field with U.S. troops. Spokesman Bryan Whitman denied that journalists were granted or denied requests based on their portrayal of the U.S. military.

Whitman added that the only measurement the Pentagon uses to assess news reports is their accuracy.

The International Federation of Journalists says it represents more than 600,000 journalists in 123 countries worldwide.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.