IEA says Media Freedom Coalition’s move to expel Afghanistan is ‘regrettable’

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The adviser and spokesman for the Ministry of Information and Culture, Abdul Matin Qani, said Saturday that the ministry is committed to freedom of expression and fully supports media outlets and access to information in accordance with Islamic and national values.

According to Qani, the Ministry of Information and Culture condemns the unilateral decision of the MFC to remove Afghanistan from the global coalition and says it is not aware of the realities in Afghanistan.

The international community should understand the realities on the ground in Afghanistan and refl ect the facts and be aware of the widespread activity of the media and freedom of expression and access to information, the ministry added.

Qani described the decision of the global Media Freedom Coalition as regrettable and added that the ministry will continue to support the freedom of expression and the media in Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Information and Culture of the Islamic Emirate has asked the global Media Support Coalition to reconsider its decision on Afghanistan.

This comes after Afghanistan was on Saturday removed as a member of the Media Freedom Coalition – a global partnership of countries working together proactively to advocate for media freedom at home and abroad.

Afghanistan became a member country of the MFC in January 2020.

In a statement issued by the coalition on Saturday, MFC stated: “It is clear to the MFC that the situation of media freedom in Afghanistan is, unfortunately, no longer in line with the Global Pledge. Indeed, the current state of affairs is one of grave concern.

“Since seizing power, the Taliban (IEA) have imposed serious restrictions on media freedom that have threatened the safety and well-being of journalists and media workers.

“The continued harassment, attacks, and detention of journalists and exclusion of women from the media have led to a rapid loss of media independence and put journalists’ lives at risk daily,” the statement read.

In conclusion, the coalition stated: “The Media Freedom Coalition will continue to closely monitor the media freedom situation in Afghanistan and reaffirms the commitment of members to the principles outlined in the Global Pledge on Media Freedom.­—Ariana News

 

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