Ajmal Samadi 0

Stop abuse of BBC-Persian-Afghanistan for sectarian politics

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To BBC World Service: I am writing to you to protest the abuse of BBC-Persian-Afghanistan website by a group of BBC writers/staff for their parochial political interests. The BBC is widely respected as an independent media outlet in Afghanistan and Afghans, from different ethnic groups and political tendencies, tune in or read the BBC for impartial news and analysis. Unfortunately it appears that a handful of political activists that have been working for the BBC, are breaching journalistic ethics and abuse the BBC's resources in furthering their political agendas. It is my understanding that journalists, when reporting, hardly take direct political positioning but strive to demonstrate impartiality and independence. However a series of analyses lately published at BBC-Persian-Afghanistan by some BBC staff writers are politically toxic and in clear violation of BBC's code of conduct. (please see links to articles at the far end of this letter) Recently the Afghan Cabinet instructed the Information & Culture Ministry to propose a plan which will protect Afghan Dari and Pashto languages from the influx of Iranian and Pakistani terminologies. This is a legitimate decision as every elected government is responsible for the cultural wellbeing of its constituency. BBC-Persian-Afghanistan staff writers fiercely disagree with the Afghan Government. Raised and educated in the Islamic Republic of Iran, these gents have launched a malicious campaign of misinformation at BBC-Persian website alleging that the pro-Iran language must be upheld in Afghanistan. In less than a week after the Afghan Cabinet's decision was announced, BBC staff writers and have each brazenly written and published at BBC-Persian their personal take on it – rather than reporting it in a fair, balanced and journalistic manner. Simply put, how BBC-Persian-Afghanistan is reporting highly sensitive political and culture issues of Afghanistan is neither journalism nor a standard the BBC is expected to deliver. The BBC is not an authorized entity to purify languages or cultures overseas. Its staff must not dictate people what language they should speak and what they should detest. The BBC must not preach for ethnic hatred, discrimination or animosity in Afghanistan. If BBC writers have strong feelings about a political cause, they must seek private mediums to air their emotions than abusing the BBC. While I intend to turn this letter into an online petition for wider support, I thought it would be good to send it to you first and expect a polite response. Please assure me that the BBC-Persian has not been hijacked by a small group of political fanatics. Thank you in anticipation for considering our protest and for taking necessary action to return non-compromised professionalism to BBC-Persian-Afghanistan website. Ajmal Samadi Links to the protested stories: http://www.bbc.co.uk/persian/afghanistan/2013/03/130227_zs_languages_satar_afghanistan.shtml http://www.bbc.co.uk/persian/afghanistan/2013/02/130227_zs_aziz_hakimi_afghan_languages.shtml http://www.bbc.co.uk/persian/afghanistan/2013/02/130226_k02-afghan-languages.shtml

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