Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) information secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb has claimed that the latest report of the Reporters Without Borders also known as Reporters Sans Frontiers (RSF), is a charge-sheet against the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government, reports Dawn.

Reporters Without Borders categorically calls Prime Minister Imran Khan a ‘predator since taking oath’. The report has been published under the caption “RSF’s 2021: Press freedom predators gallery – old tyrants, two women and a European.”

In a statement on Monday, Marriyum Aurangzeb said Imran Khan’s alleged “authoritarian attitude” and character was destroying Pakistan’s image abroad.


“The report says that the PTI government is worse than military dictatorships in Pakistan when it comes to press freedom. The Human Rights Watch, Pakistan Press Freedom Report, and Freedom Network Report had already declared the Imran government as the worst media gagging administration in the history of the country,” said Aurangzeb.

Aurangzeb said the latest report of the Reporters Without Borders had exposed the “predatory behaviour” of the government. She said the actions by the PTI government had not only reflected negatively on Pakistan’s journalism but also adversely affected the country’s position when it came to Financial Action Task Force and the GSP Plus status by the European Union.

“It mentions that journalists are harassed, abducted, and assaulted for crossing the red lines defined by the state. The report also pointed out that freedom of expression on social media is also being curbed through new dark and draconian laws,” she said while quoting from the report.

Meanwhile, Focal Person to the Prime Minister on Digital Media Dr Arslan Khalid took to Twitter and called the RSF report a “typical propaganda”.

Arslan further added that it was comical that the RSF was talking about free speech and yet calling people trolls who “dare to disagree with journalists”.

Reporters Without Borders has published a gallery of grim portraits on its official website. It includes 37 heads of state or government who crack down massively on press freedom. Some of these “predators of press freedom” have been operating for more than two decades while others have just joined the blacklist, which for the first time includes two women and a European predator.

19 of these predators rule countries that are coloured red on the RSF’s press freedom map, meaning their situation is classified as “bad” for journalism, and 16 rule countries coloured black, meaning the situation is “very bad.” The average age of the predators is 66. More than a third (13) of these tyrants come from the Asia-Pacific region, says the report.

Besides Prime Minister Imran Khan, the RSF list includes Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Chinese President Xi Jingping, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Tajik President Emamoli Rakhmon, Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, King of Bahrain Hamed bin Isa Al Khalifa and Supreme Leader of North Korea Kim Jong-un.