Word Press Day Marked In Information And Culture Ministry

Sunday, April 27, 2014
Kabul (BNA) Marking the World Press Day here in Kabul, Minister of Information and Culture, Dr. Sayed Makhdoom Raheen said freedom of press in Afghanistan was not gifted by the international community or the West, but this was the result of efforts made by the Afghan journalists and media outlets. 
According to BNA correspondent, Marking the World Press Day at a colorful ceremony, he called media freedom in Afghanistan unique among the regional countries and that the achievements were the indefatigable efforts made by the country’s journalists who suffered difficulties since the last 30 years of war to reflect the facts. “The Afghan history keeps their [journalists] memories in its heart,” Dr. Raheen lauded adding the country’s mass media law was unique among those of the regional nations.
Minister of Information and Culture called the government responsible to audit the journalists’ cases and do its best to bring to justice those committed violations against them.
Pointing out to some audio-visual media, the minister said they could fortunately shine and did effectively what their missions required in the last 12 years, during which they successfully withstood against challenges and encouraged the people to attend the April 5 election for which the security forces’ devotions to tighten security of the process were laudable.
About some audial media, Dr. Raheen advised them to refrain from insulting certain individuals in any positions, besides extending their unbiased sound criticisms.
He also said screening some serials and their subjects would never be tolerable for the Afghan families, particularly the youths. “We should persuade them {the youths} towards edification not lead them towards punishment.”
Dr. Raheen recalled the achievements of his ministry over the last 12 years as creditable and said the ministry of information and culture had done much for development of media.
According to him, mass media laws, setting some regulations for the private media activity, law on getting access to information, creation of journalists’ procedural codes, journalists’ box statute and many other laws had been drafted by the ministry of information and culture for further enrichment of media works in the country.
For her turn, Deputy Information and Culture Minister for Publication Affairs, Simeen Hassanzada lauded the country’s media development and their achievements in different fields over the last more than one decade as saying media in Afghanistan had greater achievements than other regional and world countries.
She called the media development a great achievement of the Afghan government and added Afghanistan was among those countries with great media accomplishment, despites threats and violations against the journalism society.
Noting several cases such as threats to death, beating, insulting, kidnapping and other cases of violations against journalists as reported from 34 provinces of the country, the deputy minister expressed pleasure that in some other provinces, the journalists are facing no similar threats and no risk threatens them. She hoped the journalists’ conditions further improve and they face no threat in the future.
Meanwhile, UNESCO chief in Kabul congratulated the world press day to the entire Afghan journalists and media outlets and said the day was being marked to help the flag of freedom of press remain swaying. “The Afghan journalists by their full April 5 votes’ coverage, demonstrated that they can take active part in their country’s development as they could effectively played their role in providing the people with information about the election process.”
Some other participants such as Head of Journalists Union, Abdul Hamid Mubariz and University lecturer, Dr. Asmat Elahi spoke about the media development in the country and said it was a gift bestowed by Allah “not any other.” Dr. Elahi said Afghanistan believed to freedom of press since 90 years and recently the media realizing the facts from their society, encouraged the people the April 5 process and proved to the world that their efforts had led towards the people convergence and unity. Dr. Elahi said: “We should have responsible media in order to practice based on reality for the nation.” A participant and journalist, Mari blamed the government for failing to do more for the journalists and asked the international community for safeguarding the 12 years’ media achievements beyond 2014. Praising the country’s president patience since the last 12 years, another participant and editor in chief of Mandgar Daily, Nazari Parniani said journalists had not safety in Afghanistan and asked the next government to support journalists and media.
Some analysts attended the ceremony emphasized on the media impartiality called them forerunners of the freedom of media and expression. At the end, some media representatives attended the ceremony received some gifts and prizes provided by Dunya private university board of leadership with Dr. Raheen being awarded an appreciation letter.

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