February 1st: American Journalist Daniel Pearl Is Killed

February 1, 2023

Daniel Pearl was an American journalist and the South Asia Bureau Chief of The Wall Street Journal. On January 23, 2002, he was kidnapped in Karachi, Pakistan while working on a story about Islamic extremism. His captors, a group calling themselves the “National Movement for the Restoration of Pakistani Sovereignty,” demanded the release of Pakistanis being held at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in exchange for Pearl’s release.

Despite efforts by the US government and Pearl’s family to secure his release, the kidnappers killed Pearl on February 1, 2002. A video showing Pearl’s beheading was sent to the US consulate in Karachi, and his body was found in a shallow grave in Balochistan province several weeks later.

The investigation into Pearl’s murder revealed that he was killed by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a high-ranking member of al-Qaeda who was later captured by US forces and is currently held at Guantanamo Bay.

Pearl’s death was widely condemned by journalists, human rights organizations, and government officials around the world.  His death also raised questions about the safety of journalists working in dangerous areas, and the dangers of covering extremist groups.

Daniel Pearl’s death was a huge loss for the journalism community, his family and friends, as well as all those who knew him. His legacy continues through the Daniel Pearl Foundation, which was established by his family to promote cross-cultural understanding and press freedom.






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