Unblock all Blocked Pakistani Liberal and Secular Facebook Pages
This petition had 520 supporters
On 5th June, 2014 Pakistan Telecommunication Authority connived with Facebook to ban nearly all Pakistani progressive, secular and liberal pages campaigning for a Pakistan with human rights, social justice, egality and no terrorism. The irony is that anti state, Taliban pages operate with impunity while the voices of moderation and sanity are silenced by the state organ responsible for regulating telecommunication. Pakistan is a country haunted by a troubled past and its involvement in Afghan Soviet war tattered the social fabric, society was deeply radicalized religiously and space for progressive discourse shrank over the years until broadband internet penetration began to see a stellar rise in Pakistan under General Pervaiz Musharraf's reign. The introduction of broadband internet provided some space for the progressive and moderate forces This development also blessed the embattled progressive Pakistanis with an unparalleled opportunity to channel their narrative to a much larger audience and that too without the fear of persecution in a society where being aligned with liberal thought alone merits ones life to be taken away. This was because the web offered a certain degree of anonymity. The social media, particularly Facebook effectively started giving a new picture of things earlier obscured because a variety of factors including state censorship. This increasing spread of awareness potentially has the ability to contribute to a change in the Status Quo with a better aware polity. Due to the effectiveness of this media in propagating alternative narratives to the people, the forces of status quo approached Facebook and entered an agreement with it under which any dissenting opinion propagating page could be banned by Facebook under the plea of PTA (Pakistan Telecommunication Authority). This is a plea to ALL global progressives that in this hour of need and naked state censorship of dissenting progressive voice, be the voice of Pakistani progressives when our voice has been taken away. Spread the word. You could do the following to help your fellow Pakistani progressives: SIGN OUR PETITION and: 1. You could write tabloids in your local papers highlighting this blatant attempt at state censorship and Facebook's being a party to it. 2. Bloggers could use their words and blog about this murder of free speech. 3. Media outlets and rights organizations could be engaged and asked to highlight this incident in your respective countries. Everyone is entitled to the fundamental human right to freedom of thought, conscience and speech. Pakistan has a long history of suppressing dissenting voices whether they be political, religious or any issues. Article 19 of UNDHR states: "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers." Blocking of nearly ALL Progressive Pakistani Facebook pages without a notice by PTA is a breach of article 18 and 19 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Today, Pakistani progressives need their brethren outside Pakistan, let us truly be global citizens and fight repression together.
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