He was stabbed to death in Islamabad
A top UN agency on Wednesday demanded justice for a freelance Pakistani journalist who was murdered earlier this month, as activists warned of a shrinking space for dissent and threats to freedom of speech.
Muhammad Bilal Khan, a social media activist, blogger and freelancer with tens of thousands of followers across Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, was stabbed to death in Islamabad on June 16.
Local police said on the day of his death he received a phone call from an unidentified person, who took him to a nearby forest and killed him.
“I condemn the killing of Muhammad Bilal Khan,” UNESCO chief Audrey Azoulay said in a statement, calling for “authorities investigating this crime to bring its perpetrators to trial”.
The statement came after an earlier condemnation by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), which asked Pakistani authorities to “swiftly investigate the killing to determine the motive and hold the perpetrators to account”.
“Freedom of expression is a fundamental human right that must be preserved for everybody, regardless of individuals’ religious or political opinion,” Azoulay said.