ISLAMABAD: Reiterating unswerving commitment to freedom of press and independence of media and as a good will gesture, the Interior Minister on Friday ordered removal of the name of journalist Cyril Almeida from Exit Control List (ECL).

Removal of name of the journalist would in no way affect the ongoing inquiry into the matter and the inquiry would continue to affix responsibility for the said news item, a press release issued by Press Information Department (PID) stated.

The decision was taken after a delegation of All Pakistan
Newspapers Society (APNS) and Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) jointly called on Interior Minister.

Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage
Pervaiz Rashid and Principal Information Officer Rao Tehsin Ali Khan were also present during the meeting.

Talking to the delegation the Interior Minister reiterated his
call that independent media must play its role not only towards safeguarding national interests but also to counter negative propaganda of the enemies of state.

Unverified and speculative news items citing sources on
national security issues must be refrained that cross ethical boundaries of responsible journalism.

Minister for Information Pervaiz Rashid said that the
government had firm belief in freedom of press and had proved it time and again that it could not compromise on it.