Condemning the recent killing of a television journalist in Pakistan's restive NWFP, the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation has asked Islamabad "to do everything" to stop such crimes in the country.
"This crime is a blow to freedom of expression and freedom of the press," said UNESCO Director-General Koichiro Matsuura, reacting to the killing of Sadiq Bacha Khan, a correspondent of Aaj TV and former President of the Press Club of Mardan, who was shot dead on his way to work on August 14.
"I urge the authorities to do everything in their power to put a stop to the killing of journalists, which has become particularly alarming in North West Frontier Province," he said in a statement.
He paid tribute to Khan's "courage and commitment" both to his profession and to helping the inhabitants of NWFP, which has been the scene of a major displacement crisis prompted by the Pakistani government's military offensive against militants in the region.
According to the International Press Institute, 11 journalists have been killed in Pakistan over the last two years, six of them in NWFP.