Journalist Taha Siddiqui assaulted by armed men, escapes abduction

WION's Journalist Taha Siddiqui Beaten Up By'10-12 Men, Escapes Abduction Bid In Pakistan

WION's Pakistan bureau chief escapes abduction after assault; says he is safe

"I was on my way to airport today at 8:20am when 10-12 armed men stopped my cab & forcibly tried to abduct me".

A Pakistani reporter working for Indian English news channel, World Is One News (WION), on Wednesday alleged that he had escaped abduction at the hands of 10-12 people who tried pulling him out of a cab.

He said his taxi, which was enroute to the airport, was stopped by men armed with rifles, soon after which they thrashed him.

Taha Siddiqui tweeted that he was on his way to the airport when he was almost abducted. However, Taha Siddiqui managed to escape and reached the police station to report the incident. He tweeted about the incident from a fellow journalist Cyril Almeida's Twitter account.

Taha tweeted from his friend's Twitter handle where he said that he was safe with the police now.

He is the only journalist in Pakistan ever to go on record about being tortured in custody.

The Rawalpindi Union of Journalists has expressed serious concern over the attempted kidnapping. Freedom of press could not be suppressed through such actions.

"This is extremely worrying and reinforces the fear that human rights groups and media organisations have voiced for a while now that the Pakistan government views violence as an instrument of dealing with dissenting voices", Human Rights Watch country representative Saroop Ijaz told AFP.

In May a year ago, Siddiqui filed a formal complaint against the counter-terrorism wing of the civilian Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) after they summoned him and asked him to submit his laptop for forensic tests.

Last year, Taha was issued a notice by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to summon him for his anti-military comments.

According to the petition, Siddiqui received a phone call from an officer in the FIA's counter-terrorism wing, deputy director Noman Bodla, on May 18, 2017. Journalism is not a crime, but attacking journalists is. How did Hamid Mir survive six bullets?

The attack comes months after prominent reporter Ahmed Noorani was also savagely beaten and stabbed in the head after being dragged out of his vehicle in Islamabad by armed assailants. "Just count our dead".

There were others however, who stood up for Siddiqui and offered an explanation.

Taha's friends and colleagues tweeted his pictures of torn shirt with blood stains.

"Asad Hashim, an Al Jazeera journalist, tweeted that Taha Siddiqui, Pakistan's bureau chief for WION, was beaten up, threatened with death and his belongings were taken away".

Applied Materials Incorporated (NASDAQ:AMAT) on Focus After Report of More Shorts
Supreme Court could uphold Ohio voter purge effort