A high-profile Pakistani news anchor escaped an assassination plot after it was discovered there was a bomb underneath his car.
Police were able to dismantle the bomb beneath the vehicle of Hamid Mir, a host with Geo TV, according to the broadcaster. The bomb was apparently planted when he stopped at a market.
“The explosives were placed just beneath the seat where I sit (in the car),” Mir told Geo.
Mir was the subject of criticism by the Taliban over reporting on the shooting attack of schoolgirl activist Malala Yousafzai. She is recovering in a hospital in the United Kingdom.
“It’s a message to me as well as Geo and the journalist community in Pakistan,” Mir told Geo. He added, “I will continue to raise my voice for truth and justice.”
Interior Minister Rehman Malik told Geo the bomb was powerful enough to damage a building and would have likely destroyed Mir’s car.
Pakistan Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira told The News International he condemned the attempted attack, describing it as an “extremist mindset.”
Pakistan is ranked as one of the most dangerous places to work as a journalist, according to media watchdogs.
Since 2000, at least 91 journalists have been killed in relation to their work, making Pakistan the third most dangerous place for media workers after Somalia and Syria, reported the DAWN newspaper.
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