News / Asia

Pakistan Rejects US Allegation About Slain Journalist

TEXT SIZE - +

Pakistan is denouncing comments by the top U.S. military officer that elements within the Pakistani government sanctioned the killing of a journalist in late May.

Pakistani Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan on Friday called Admiral Mike Mullen's remarks "extremely irresponsible and unfortunate."  The minister said such comments will create problems in bilateral ties between the United States and Pakistan, and could negatively impact joint efforts against terrorism.

Admiral Mullen, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters in Washington Thursday that he has not seen anything to counter reports that Islamabad approved the beating death of Pakistani reporter Saleem Shahzad.  But Mullen said he could not tie the killing to a specific Pakistani government agency.

Pakistani's powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) has dismissed allegations of any involvement in Shahzad's killing as "baseless."

Shahzad, who worked for the Hong Kong-based Asia Times Online, disappeared from Pakistan's capital Islamabad on May 29.  His body was found in a canal two days later bearing signs of torture.

Before his death, the journalist had been investigating alleged ties between Pakistan's military and militant groups.  Shahzad had also told a human rights activist that he had been threatened by the ISI.

A Pakistani government spokesman earlier on Friday said the government has set up a judicial commission to investigate Shahzad's death and that any information should be shared with the panel. The unnamed spokesman said any other statements issued on the subject may be considered an attempt to influence the probe, and warned that some elements are trying to use the case against the Pakistani government.

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists named Pakistan the most dangerous place for journalists in 2010, with at least eight killed.

In his comments to reporters Thursday, Admiral Mullen said the reported abuse and killing of journalists in Pakistan is "not a way to move ahead" and is instead is a way for the Pakistani government to "spiral in the wrong direction."

The chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff also acknowledged U.S. relations with Pakistan are "under extraordinary pressure."

He said Islamabad's already fragile bond with Washington became severely strained when U.S. special operations forces killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in a raid on his compound deep inside Pakistan in May.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid