Geo TV network and Jang media group today tendered an apology to Pakistan's armed forces and the ISI for hurling allegations at its chief, Lt Gen Zaheerul Islam, over the assassination attempt on leading news anchor Hamid Mir.
In a published apology in English daily The News and Urdu newspaper Jang, the media group clarified that they respected the Pakistani armed forces and its leadership.
"We have always appreciated their sacrifices to safeguard our borders and the security of our country," said the apology letter.
The Jang Group, which owns Geo TV, clarified that the allegations were not hurled by the institution but by Mir himself and later repeated by his brother soon after the attack in Karachi.
Mir had repeatedly held the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) or elements within its ranks for orchestrating the attack on his life. The senior anchorperson had said in his first media interaction that he was being threatened to leave the country by the same elements who he alleged were behind the attack, the Dawn reported.
"After serious retrospection, editorial debates, feedback and engagement with all parties, directly and indirectly, we have concluded that our coverage immediately after the tragic and unnerving attack on Hamid Mir on April 19 was excessive, distressful and emotional," said the group in today's apology.
The media giant accepted that the coverage of the incident was "misleading, disproportionate and inappropriate giving impression of a campaign", although it followed current media practices including the version of armed forces with a photo of DG ISPR televised repeatedly.
The group apologised to the ISI, its chief, his family, the Pakistani Army and television viewers for causing "deep hurt".