Chile II

WHEREAS a journalist was arrested and put on trial along with several executives of Chilevisión, and the police have forcibly seized journalistic material from that media outlet WHEREAS the reason behind these developments was the appearance of a public interest story that reported that a judge’s integrity was compromised in a case over which he was presiding, which led to his removal from the case and indeed from his position on the Supreme Court WHEREAS the case against the journalist is in the hands of a judge who had previously expressed public support of her colleague, which would indicate a form of prejudice WHEREAS the courts have displayed a tendency to question the work of the press, which has been reflected in situations such as those mentioned above and in recent statements by the country’s highest-ranking judges WHEREAS this perception, in turn, encourages individuals involved in situations that are covered in the press to resort to the courts to shield their actions and make it more difficult for the people to know about them 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 MIDYEAR MEETING OF THE IAPA RESOLVES to express its profound concern over several rulings and statements by the courts that are part of an overtly hostile policy toward freedom of expression, a policy that unfortunately has found clear precedent in the recent confiscation of books and, currently, the forcible seizure of professional journalism materials and the arrest and trials of journalists to stress that the freedom of speech is foremost among human rights and that it is precisely the obligation of the judicial branch to provide the people with protection and guarantees to ensure that these inalienable freedoms and rights will be honored.