Taha Siddiqui is a Pakistani journalist living in exile in Paris since January 2018. After an attack on Mr. Siddiqui on 10th of January, this year (2018), he and his family left Islamabad on 13th February with as much as a few suitcases, leaving their home country Pakistan, for a safer refuge in France.
The attack, believed to be carried out by Pakistani military personnel, was a failed abduction attempt on Siddiqui when he was on his way to the Islamabad airport for a flight to London. He escaped, and was later advised by the civilian government to seek pardon from the military. He refused to do that, and gave up his residence in Pakistan instead of bowing down to the Pakistan Army, which accuses him of working against the state. His crime: he has been a vocal critique of Pakistan Army, and did not exercise self-censorship while performing his journalistic duties. Read more about it here.
Siddiqui is an investigative journalist and his work has appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, France24 among many other international and Pakistani and Indian news organizations.
Siddiqui is now trying to rebuild his life from scratch and wants to continue working on Pakistan and South Asia, and the idea to launch SAFENEWSROOMS.org comes from his own harrowing experience, as he refused to self-censor and from the safety of exile, he wants to continue talking about freedom of expression, especially in newsrooms across South Asia.
The digital media platform was launched on this World Press Freedom Day, the 3rd of May, 2018.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and tweets @TahaSSiddiqui