Pakistani journalist Cyril Almeida took to Twitter on 10 October to allege that his name had appeared on the Pakistan government's Exit Control List. Under the ECL, Almeida - assistant editor with Pakistan's Dawn newspaper - is prohibited from leaving the country.
I am told and have been informed and have been shown evidence that I am on the Exit Control List.— cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 10, 2016
Confirming the developments on 11 October, he tweeted:
I feel sad tonight. This is my life, my country. What went wrong.— cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 10, 2016
Puzzled, saddened. Had no intention of going anywhere; this is my home. Pakistan.— cyril almeida (@cyalm) October 11, 2016
His tweet on 10 October came after Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ordered authorities to take "stern action" against those responsible for a "fabricated" story about the military and ISI in Dawn.
In a news report in Dawn on 6 October - titled Exclusive: Act against militants or face international isolation, civilians tell military - Almeida wrote that Pakistan's civilian government representatives had warned that Islamabad would face international isolation if the security establishment did not take the recommended course of action. The report also stated that the civilian government and the Pakistan military have agreed to two sets of actions.Sharif's office had rejected the story terming it as "misleading".
Dawn's editor Zaffar Abbas has affirmed that the story was verified and cross-checked, adding that the security officials who had attended had in fact confirmed the news. Terming it as an "malicious campaign", the editor said that the government should refrain from targeting the country's most respected newspaper.
Dawn's editor Zaffar Abbas defiant after the Government placed its staffer Cyril Almeida on the Exit Control List pic.twitter.com/QEOZjwLrNT— omar r quraishi (@omar_quraishi) October 10, 2016