Journalist Taha Siddiqui assaulted, 'narrowly escapes' abduction bid

Taha Siddiqui

Earlier in the morning, Bureau Chief of World is One News Taha Siddiqui was on his way to the airport by a vehicle to catch a flight when a group of people comprising 10 to 12 men made an attempt to abduct him with force in the jurisdiction of Koral Police Station.

The journalist says he is now "safe with police", who are investigating. "Looking for support in any way possible #StopEnforcedDisappearances", wrote Siddiqui in a tweet posted on a fellow journalist's account.

The journalist used the Twitter account of journalist Cyril Almeida to share details of the incident and said he escaped a kidnapping attempt by the attackers.

Al Jazeera journalist Asad Hashim, who accompanied Siddiqui to Koral police station, said it was a miracle that Taha Siddiqui escaped.

The country has seen enforced disappearances of journalists in the recent days. It is a miracle that he escaped. In November, the 2017 World Press Freedom Index, placed Pakistan among the most risky countries for journalists. He added that Hashim's belongings were also taken away from him.

In 2016, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said in its report that Pakistan was fourth on the list of the deadliest countries in the world for journalists, and came behind Mexico, Philippines and Iraq.

"Journalist community must condemn the kidnapping attempt of TahaSSiddiqui with full unity no compromise on harassment of media", journalist Hamid Mir wrote. Journalism is not a crime.

The Indian news channel's journalist had previously claimed to have been harassed by Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), which had issued a him notice and asked him to appear before its counterterrorism wing, Dawn reported.

Siddiqui was piled into a auto by the armed men but managed to escape by jumping out of the moving vehicle, according to reports.

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