Rest of Asia

Banned Pakistani TV host apologises over speech against army

Filed on June 9, 2021
Hamid Mir was removed as host of his talk show “Capital Talk” by Geo News TV channel after he made a fiery speech at a rally against growing attacks on journalists.

Hamid Mir says he had no intention to defame the military

A prominent Pakistani journalist who was banned and taken off air by his TV station after he criticised the country’s military last month at a protest against growing attacks on journalists has offered an apology, saying he had no intention to defame the army.

Hamid Mir took to Twitter on Wednesday, saying he apologised over his remarks before a journalists’ local union that defended him since Geo News TV removed him in May as the host of his talk show “Capital Talk”.

He said he tendered no such apology to his employer as he did not use Geo News TV’s platform when he made a fiery speech at a rally in May to express solidarity with journalist Asad Ali Toor and others who were attacked or harassed.

Mir made the speech during a protest outside the National Press Club in Islamabad against attacks on journalists. He said he got carried away after speeches by other speakers as he too had faced an attack in the past.

Mr Mir offered an apology if his speech hurt the feelings of any person. He said he had no differences with the army nor did he name any person.

Press freedom advocates often accuse Pakistan’s military of harassing journalists.

Pakistani authorities insist they support freedom of speech and Mir’s removal as the host was TV’s internal affairs. — Agencies

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