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HomeWORLDPakistan’s media regulatory authority prohibits TV channels from covering terrorist attacks

Pakistan’s media regulatory authority prohibits TV channels from covering terrorist attacks

Pakistan media regulatory authority: In a new directive, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has prohibited news channels from covering terrorist attacks. Pakistan based The News International Newspaper said the directives came after an earlier order urging TV channels to adhere to the Electronic Media Code of Conduct 2015,.

“It has been observed with grave concern that despite repeated directives satellite TV channels are unable to comply with provisions of the Electronic Media Code of Conduct-2015 in letter and spirit,” the notification stated. PEMRA justified the decision saying that news channels ignore basic journalistic norms only to “take lead” and “credit” for breaking the news first.

Channels violate journalistic ethics by “airing live images of the crime scene”, PEMRA said.

‘Unverified, speculative’ reporting

“Satellite TV channels and their staff are found ambivalent of not only their security but also create hurdles in rescue and combat operations,” PEMRA stated. It added that information shared on news channels in such a situation is “unverified, speculative without consulting security agencies present on the spot”.

The regulatory authority also noted that such reporting creates chaos among domestic and overseas viewers saying that reporting such incidents gives benefits to terrorists for “using media as a form of political advertising” and serves their ideological purposes by “publicising their campaign”.

“Moreover, media coverage of such incidents also gives terrorists an organisational advantage by allowing a specific group to exhibit its strength and audaciousness in comparison with its rivals,” the watchdog stated.

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