“The life of Pakistani journalists, especially those in the tribal areas, has become a real nightmare. They are being harassed and even killed.”
“Reporting is a game of death. Pakistan is falling apart and there is a danger of the Army and ISI to take over the democratically elected government again.” *
(*Above excerpt from correspondence between OEN managing editor Amanda Lang and David Dastych of the Davids Media Agency in Poland.)
There is no way to sugar coat this, no embellishment is needed.
Recent correspondence with Muhammad Khurshid, resident of the Bajaur Agency tribal region along the Pak-Afghan border, and one of the most dangerous locales on the globe, has brought to light an escalating crisis that has Muhammad and his family living amongst the rubble where their home once stood. Unemployed, homeless and now unable to provide basic food necessities for his family, all the while buried even deeper in the emotional abyss of fending off death threats aimed at his entire family, Khurshid sends out a desperate cry for help.
Over the last few days, Khurshid has been in contact with me, OEN publisher Rob Kall, and managing editor Amanda Lang. The following are recent emails I’ve received from Muhammad:
I have great concern for the safety of Fatima and my children as I have lost contact with them for the last few days. I am just praying for their safety. I have already told you that I am facing multiple crises. On the one hand I have been receiving threats from terrorists and officials, but on the other hand I am jobless. I am in great depression and frustration as I am seeing myself collapse, but I can do nothing. I have tried so many times to establish contacts with ****, but I have lost contact with him. He is not responding to my emails. I do not know where he is. I have also written a joint article with him in the Washington Times. I think if you have the time you can contact Washington Times asking them to provide help to one of its writers.
You can tell them that my wife and children are facing death threats. You can also tell them that my wife and children are facing death due to hunger.
I do not want to disturb you or create problem for you, but I am still in trouble and still living in danger. My wife Fatima and my children are also in great trouble as still I am have been receiving threats from terrorists and officials.
My resources have also dried up and now I am unable to provide two times a day bread to my children and wife. I am not getting job despite the fact I have been trying for that. Though I am in trouble, but I am still hopeful of better days. When the better days will come I do not know, but I have the belief that they will come certainly.
I consider myself guilty for creating problem for you, but I have no other option. Nowadays I am getting very little time on the internet, therefore, I am unable to inform you in detail, but I want to tell you now I am in real trouble and needing the help. I am just collapsing.
Please forgive me for bringing problem in your life. This is my desire to see happiness in your life. This is my desire that you may enjoy the life.
This is my desire that God the Great may give you all the happiness in this life and in the life hereafter if there is any.
Again thank you very much and please remember me in your prayer and thought.