Salman Iqbal, the CEO of ARY News has refused to return to Pakistan to cooperate in the investigation into the murder of renowned investigative journalist Arshad Sharif due to a lack of trust in the incumbent coalition government. In a statement issued on social media, Salman Iqbal said he doesn’t trust any “independent” commission investigating Arshad Sharif’s assassination. However, he is willing to provide answers to whatever questions put forward to him in this connection, he said. “I do not believe in the independence of the investigation being undertaken by the current PMLN government, but I will answer any questions put to me,” he said. My statement. #ArshadSharifShaheed @UNHumanRights #pfuj pic.twitter.com/7D2o58ng7t — Salman Iqbal ARY (@Salman_ARY) October 28, 2022 Salman Iqbal demanded an inquiry by a United Nations panel. “I am calling for an independent investigation overseen by the UN Human Rights Office, and I will of course provide my full cooperation to any such investigation seeking to get to the full truth behind the killing of Arshad Sharif with a view to bringing those responsible to justice,” he said in the statement. Arshad’s life was legitimately threatened, according to the ARY CEO, who requested government protection. He claimed that rather than getting assistance, he was targeted and the subject of numerous FIRs, arrest orders, and sedition prosecutions. The journalist had to decide to leave Pakistan because of these circumstances, he claimed. He said the government has been running a smear campaign against him since it came into power in April 2022. He said PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz started the campaign against him as the FBR, FIA, PEMRA and SECP have been weaponized to politically attack him. Salman Iqbal stated that he is concerned for his safety due to the unwarranted attacks on him and the persecution of journalists by the PMLN government. For the previous six months, he claimed he had been unable to come back to Pakistan. “The wild and baseless allegations recently levelled against me by the interior minister in relation to Arshad’s killing are a continuation of this campaign,” he pinpointed. “Let me say categorically that I had no involvement whatsoever in the gruesome act against my brother,” he said.