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Pakistan Lifts Travel Ban On Journalist

Cyril Almeida
Cyril Almeida

Pakistan has lifted a travel ban imposed on a leading journalist for reporting that civilian officials had argued with the country's powerful military over its alleged covert support for militants.

An official memorandum issued by the Interior Ministry stated that it had "been decided to delete the name of Cyril Almeida ... from the Exit Control List."

No further details were given on what prompted the government to remove Almeida's name.

Pakistan's Interior Minister Nisar Ali Khan told reporters on October 13 that journalist would not be allowed to leave the country until the completion of a government committee's inquiry into the story, which authorities claim was fabricated.

Almeida is a leading columnist and assistant editor at Dawn, one of Pakistan's most-respected English-language dailies.

Human rights activists urged the government immediately to lift travel and other restrictions on Almeida.

Almeida's October 6 story was about a high-level security meeting between military and government officials over the possible arrest of members of a militant anti-India group that became very intense.

Based on reporting by AFP