Costa Rica

Resolution of the 62nd General Assembly Mexico City, Mexico September 29 – October 3, 2006 WHEREAS Judge Ernesto Jinesta of the Constitutional Division of the Costa Rican Supreme Court ordered several editors of media outlets to render a statement under oath on “a possible parallel trial in the press or media” to which a former president of Costa Rica claims to have been subjected WHEREAS this bizarre investigation opens the door for improper judicial interference into the media’s reporting policies and practices, and represents a serious threat to press freedom WHEREAS its reporting on corruption has earned the Costa Rican press international renown, and any attempt to improperly curb its work should be firmly rejected WHEREAS on May 3 of this year, World Press Freedom Day, the Constitutional Division of the Costa Rican Supreme Court—in a ruling that clearly goes against a progressive international trend—upheld the archaic Print Law, which makes injuria (offensive or insulting statements or actions) and calumnia (false allegations of a crime) punishable by jail WHEREAS Principle 10 of the Declaration of Chapultepec states: “No news medium nor journalist may be punished for publishing the truth or criticizing or denouncing the government” THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE IAPA RESOLVES to express its surprise that the freedom of expression is being compromised at the hands of the very court that, above all others, is charged with guaranteeing the protection of human rights to urge the Constitutional Division of the Costa Rican Supreme Court to ensure that freedom of speech and freedom of the press are.