GUATEMALA The Guatemalan press has experienced one of its most active periods during the past year. It was censored, threatened and one the country's best known journalists was murdered. Despite this and the policical instability in the country, it has emerged strengthened from these traumatic experiences. Censorship was one of the first steps taken by former President Jorge Serrano Elias as part of his failed "self coup" on May 25. Although not all media acted in the same way, the dominant attitude was one of absolute rejection, by both the press and the public in general, of censorship and control. With the failure of the self coup, the media resumed normal operations, many of them with an enhanced respect as a result of their stand against the censorship and their creativity in getting around it. Since the current preSident, Ramiro de Leon Carpio, took office, the clashes between the government and the press have practically disappeared. However, the news media and their staffs still work in a climate of fear and the government has not been able to stem criminal violence against journalists. The victims have included Jorge Carpio Nicolle, former presidential candidate and founding editor of El Grafico, who was killed July 3 in an ambush in northeast Guatemala. As yet nobody has been charged with his murder, which his family attributed to leftist guerrillas. Thus, as in all the cases of threats, attacks and slayings involving Guatemalan journalists, the culprits continue to go unpunished. Following is a chronological list of the main incidents involving the press this year: January 1,1993 - The press of the magazine Tinamitwas set on fire by a group of armed men. January 13, 1993 - The president of the IAPA Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Eduardo Ulibarri, La Nación, San Jose, Costa Rica, met with President Serrano Elias to request greater support for freedom of expression. February 12, 1993 - Marta Altolaguirre of Siglo 21 and Cr6nica was threatened after she called in an article for a public debate between journalists and President Serrano Elias and his minister of defense. February 25, 1993 - Another IAPA mission headed by Edward Seaton and including Madrigal Montealegre, Enrique G6mez Orozco and Carlos Verdecia, again requested assurances of greater freedom of information and expressed solidarity with the journalists who had been attacked. March 5, 1993 - It was reported that Eduardo Sam Aldana, correspondent of Prensa Libre in Alta Verapaz, was prevented from doing his job by a junior police official. March 31, 1993 - The following people received death threats after this date: Byron Barrera-Ortiz, director of the Central American Press Agency; Mario Robert Morales, Cr6nica and Prensa Libre; Otto Moran, editor of Tinamit; Carlos Rafael Soto, El Grafico, and Marco Augusto Quiroa, Danilo Rodriguez, Haroldo Sanchez, Hugo Arce and Marco Vinicio Mejia, all of Siglo 21. May 25, 1993 Following the "self coup" of President Serrano Elias, strong censorship was imposed and all media in the country were affected in some way. Channel 11 was closed and Channels 7 and 13 were placed under censorship. All radio stations broadcast only marimba music for several days. The main newspapers were ordered to be censored. Prensa Libre agreed to publish with censorship. Other dailies, among them Siglo 21 and La Hora, refused to publish in protest. They came out several days later carrying symbols of the censorship on their front pages. Foreign correspondents and international news agencies were restricted. Journalists were not allowed to travel freely around the country. May 26, 1993 - Mario Antonio Sandoval resigned as director of Prensa Libre in protest at the censorship imposed after the coup. May 27,1993 - Francisco Perez de Ant6n, editor of the magazine Crónica, reported he had received several telephone death threats. May 28, 1993 - The May 28 issue of Cr6nica was confiscated by the military backers of former President Serrano Elias. June 26,1993 -Some 9,000 copies of Cr6nica seized in May were found burned outside Guatemala City. July 3,1993 -Jorge Carpio Nicolle, journalist and politician, was killed along with three companions when his car was fired on by a group of 20 heavily armed assailants. The government and police said it was a simple robbery, but neither his wife nor various political leaders and journalists believed this. Carpio Nicolle was the founder of the Unión de Centro Nacional party. He was also founding editor of El Grafico and founder of La Tarde, El Deportivo and Bolsillo. July 30, 1993 - Juan Castillo and Marco Julio Trejo, Siglo 21, were threatened by police during student protests in downtown Guatemala City. July 30, 1993 - President Ramiro de León Carpio met with members of the press to express his support for freedom of expression and to urge representatives of the country's most influential media to practice a "more objective journalism" in their coverage of the government. He also expressed his consternation at the burning of the magazine Crónica. August 1, 1993 - A group of unidentified people fired on the offices of Siglo 21 from a car. An hour before the attack, a person who refused to be identified threatened staff at the newspaper and demanded a meeting with the chairman of its editorial board, Jose Ruben Zamora. August 4, 1993 - Police searched the main plant of the magazine Tinamit and intercepted its distributor in the city of San Lucas de Sacatepequez. They claimed he was carrying subversive material. October 6, 1992 - The names of 10 journalists were placed on a "black list" of the self-styled Roberto Lorenzana Anti-Communist Movement. The journalists were "urged" to leave the country within 72 hours. They are Haroldo Sanchez and Julio Juarez of Siglo 21; Haroldo Shetemul (Cronica), Guillermo Giron Valdez (Prensa Libre), and columnists Hugo Arce, Carlos Rafael Soto, Marco Vinicio Mejia, Marco Augusto Quiroa, Leonor Paz and Marina Coronado. October 28 - A mob of "supposed demonstrators hired by politicians" attacked two journalists from La Hora and one from Prensa Libre in front of the Congress. The reporters were hospitalized. During October it became known that federal deputies and politicians wanted to include in a series of amendments to the Constitution a change in the law governing the expression of opinion in Guatemala. This was denounced by Prensa Libre and a day later the initiative was rejected by the people.