Monday, February 16, 2009

News outlets cover Pakistan sharia law deal

As was widely reported yesterday, in an effort to boost security in the mountainous Swat region, the Pakistani government has reached a deal with the Taliban to return the region to Islamic law.

In covering a story like this for a Western audience, context is critical if you want the readers/viewers to understand why this is significant. The Associated Press Coverage found here focuses on the U.S. political reaction, with only glancing attention to the issues that shariah law might bring about for civilians living in the region.

Another article published in the National, from Abu Dhabi, offers a lengthy historical context detailing the relationship of shariah law and the relative peace within the region.

CNN's international edition had a few grafs on the social impact here.

Reuters, a few years ago, ran a summary of sharia law in the context of another story. The brief summary does highlight some of the cultural issues that might be important for a Western audience.

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