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Wednesday, October 05 2022
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Pakistan drops further on World Press Freedom Index

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Karachi: Pakistan has dropped further on the list of countries in terms of protection of journalists in a report by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), media reports said.

According to the RSF report, Pakistan has fallen by 12 places to 157 out of 180 countries. Last year, Pakistan was ranked 145th on the list, Geo News reported.

Expressing his concern on the worsening situation, the President of Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE), Kazim Khan, said that one can disagree with the editorial policy, but no one can impose their decision on an institution.

Fazil Jamili, President of Karachi Press Club, said that freedom of expression will be protected by putting personal interests above everything, Geo News reported.

World Press Freedom Day is celebrated every year on May 3 to highlight the fundamental principles of press freedom and present the current state of journalism to the world.

The day is also celebrated to show solidarity and pay tribute to the journalists who were killed, injured or affected while performing their duties.

The 2022 edition of the World Press Freedom Index, which assesses the state of journalism in 180 countries and territories, highlights the disastrous effects of news and information chaos — the effects of a globalised and unregulated online information space that encourages fake news and propaganda, RSF said.

Within democratic societies, divisions are growing as a result of the spread of opinion media following the “Fox News model” and the spread of disinformation circuits that are amplified by the way social media functions.

At the international level, democracies are being weakened by the asymmetry between open societies and despotic regimes that control their media and online platforms while waging propaganda wars against democracies. Polarisation on these two levels is fuelling increased tension.

The invasion of Ukraine (106th) by Russia (155th) at the end of February reflects this process, as the physical conflict was preceded by a propaganda war.

China (175th), one of the world’s most repressive autocratic regimes, uses its legislative arsenal to confine its population and cut it off from the rest of the world, especially the population of Hong Kong (148th), which has plummeted in the Index.

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