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PAKISTANI JOURNALIST GETS FOUR-YEAR JAIL TERM FOR “ENTERING AFGHANISTAN ILLEGALLY”

JALALABAD: An Afghan court has sentenced a Pakistani journalist to four years in jail for “contacting terrorists”, officials said Wednesday. Faizullah Khan, a reporter with the ARY news channel, was arrested in April by Afghan security forces in Nangarhar province near the border with Pakistan after contacting the Pakistani Taliban. “We have found photos of him showing him with a gun among terrorists,” Wafiullah Usmani, the head of the national security court of Nangarhar told.

“He is accused of contacting terrorists. He did not have any travel documents on him when he was arrested.” Khan was arrested with two Pakistani Taliban on the Afghan side of the border, he said. The sentence was passed on July 9.Ahmad Zai Abdulzai, a spokesman for the provincial governor, said the journalist was arrested for “threatening national security”.

Akhtar Munir, an official with the Pakistan embassy in Kabul, said its consulate in Jalalabad was assisting the reporter, who would appeal against the verdict. “The Afghan government has been approached at various levels to help in releasing the journalist,” he added.

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