Impunity - Mexico

WHEREAS there are suspicions that the death of José Miranda Virgen, a columnist for the newspaper Sur de Veracruz, was an attack because of the inconsistencies found in the report by experts hired by his relatives, colleagues and members of the Journalists’ Association of Veracruz (APEV) and because the victim wrote critical articles about the conduct of state authorities WHEREAS Félix Fernández García, editor of the magazine Nueva Opción of Ciudad Miguel Alemán, Tamaulipas, was murdered on January 18, 2002, and so far the investigation has not yielded any results WHEREAS Saúl Antonio Martínez González, assistant editor of the newspaper El Imparcial in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, was murdered on March 24, 2001, and the investigation has not yielded any results WHEREAS José Luis Ortega Mata, editor of Semanario de Ojinaga, was murdered on February 19, 2001, and after the suspected mastermind was arrested and then released, the investigation has yielded no results WHEREAS two of the suspects in the 1998 murder of journalist Philip True, a correspondent in Mexico for the San Antonio Express-News, are still at large, even though the Jalisco courts issued an arrest order this June, because an appeal by the suspect’s defense lawyer is still being processed WHEREAS the Mexican government has not responded to recommendations of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights about the murders, which have been investigated by the IAPA, of Héctor Félix Miranda on April 29, 1988, and Víctor Manuel Oropeza, on July 3, 1991, which establish that the Mexican government has international responsibility for these crimes WHEREAS Mexican President Vicente Fox promised the IAPA that he would encourage measures to investigate the murders of journalists and even though an Office of Incidents That Violate Freedom of Expression was established in the Government Secretariat, this has not been enough to solve the open cases WHEREAS Principle 4 of the Declaration of Chapultepec declares that “Freedom of expression and of the press are severely limited by murder, terrorism, kidnapping, intimidation, the unjust imprisonment of journalists, the destruction of facilities, violence of any kind and impunity for perpetrators. Such acts must be investigated promptly and punished harshly”