EU, US commend government's new by-law on media
KABUL (Pajhwok): The European Union on Tuesday welcomed the Afghan government's launch of a new by-law on Establishment and Activity of Private Mass Media.
The new by-law issues minimum requirements in a number of important areas like contracts, safety, insurance, including medical insurance, and pension for media workers.
"The EU commends the Afghan government on the new by-law that is a step forward for a free and critical press in Afghanistan. Already Afghanistan has one of the most professional press corps in the region.
"We now need to see the by-law implemented and call upon the Afghan government to make sure that this happens," said EU Special Representative Ambassador Franz-Michael Mellbin.
In a statement, Mellbin called the freedom of the press and expression a fundamental right of any free society and was strongly supported by the EU.
He acknowledged the Afghans have in the last decade enjoyed a high level of freedom of the press and expression. "This is key to the further development of a democratic society in Afghanistan."
Meanwhile, the US Embassy in Kabul congratulated the Afghan government over launching the Afghan Mass Media Commission of the by-law on Establishment and Activity of Private Mass Media.
In a statement, the Embassy said the launch was is the result of a broad collaboration of representatives from the government, media, and civil society.
“I particularly commend the new law’s protections for the rights of journalists. I hope the implementation of the law will further advance a vibrant and vital free press in Afghanistan,” the statement quoted US Ambassador P. Michael McKinley as saying.
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