ISLAMABAD - Pakistan People’s Party chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari yesterday expressed surprise and dismay over the issuance of arrest warrants for a journalist.

In a statement, the PPP leader said: “Treating Cyril Almeida like he is a criminal and trying him for treason is shocking! This adds on to the perception that media is under siege in Pakistan. Almeida was doing his job — nothing less, nothing more.”

Bilawal said that the Pakistani media was already facing the worst kind of censorship. “Dictators who have abrogated the constitution and have actually committed treason are roaming free while journalists who are only doing their jobs are being tried for treason”.

The PPP chief said that Almeida broke no law by interviewing former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. “Why should a journalist not interview someone? What law stops a journalist from interviewing a politician?” Bilawal said that the PPP stands by freedom of expression and wants a free media in Pakistan. “Democracy without a free media is a sham democracy,” he added.