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Pakistan Suspends License Of GEO News

Pakistan's media regulatory agency has suspended the operating license of the country's leading news channel after a complaint from the Pakistani military.

The regulatory agency announced the decision on June 6 to suspend the license for Geo News for 15 days for reporting that the military's Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI) agency was behind the April shooting of one of the channel's most popular journalists, Hamid Mir.

The agency also imposed a fine of around $100,000.

It said that if the fine is not paid within 15 days the suspension of broadcasting would be prolonged.

The London-based human rights group Amnesty International decried the move against Geo News as a "politically motivated attack" targeting the network because of its perceived bias against the military.

Geo News announced on June 6 that it was suing the ISI for defamation for calling the station "antistate."

Geo released a statement in a newspaper owned by its parent company that said "8,000 journalists, workers, and professionals [of the station] and their families are not only being harassed but also attacked and tortured across Pakistan."
Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, AP, and dpa