Pakistani authorities have barred foreign journalists from visiting any seminary or other places in southern Punjab province after the Western media reported on the presence of the Taliban in that area.

“All foreign journalists are required to get permission from foreign affairs as well as from interior ministries for visiting any specific place especially in South Punjab,” a senior officer of the Punjab government told PTI.

He said in the past foreign journalists had visited different seminaries in the province and published or broadcast “twisted and unfounded” facts.

“We have no issue if they follow journalistic ethics and report correctly,” the official said.

Giving example of a UK based popular TV channel, Regional Police Officer of Bahawalpur division Mushtaq Sukhera, said that the TV crew requested for filming various seminaries in Bahawalpur including one of Jaish-e-Mohammad’s chief Maulana Azhar Masood.

“I was rather shocked to see that the TV channel showed that the seminary of Masood Azhar was used as a training camp of terrorists,” Mr. Sukhera said.

A couple of days ago Sabrina Tavernise, a reporter of New York Times, was barred from visiting the family of a man allegedly involved in the attack on the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) provincial headquarters in Lahore on May 27.

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