Argentina I

WHEREAS systematically, when faced with the publication of news and opinions that are not in line with the official agenda and discourse, the Argentine government rather than focus on the information disseminated chooses to attack and discredit those that transmit it, which worsens the climate of intolerance, weakens the right to information and undermines freedom of expression WHEREAS the increase in actions against the news media has repeatedly included discrimination in allowing reporters to access news sources, obstacles to access to public information, mistreatment of reporters in press conferences and their stigmatization according to the media outlet that they belong to WHEREAS far from lessening there has been an alarming worsening of the hostilities that the government expresses against media, editors and reporters through libelous references that include false accusations of extortion, institutional destabilization and complaints of non-existing censorship WHEREAS there continues to be an escalation in questionable official practices regarding the news media, such as arbitrary decisions in placement of official advertising, the co-opting of privately-owned media through companies supporting the government, and the abuse and slanted use of the state-owned media to advance offical discourse and stigmatize other voices WHEREAS principle 6 of the Declaration of Chapultepec states “The media and journalists should neither be discriminated against nor favored because of what they write or say” THE IAPA MIDYEAR MEETING RESOLVES to be alert to and encourage an end to the attitudes of hostility and violence on the part of government sectors and the governing party against editors and publishers, reporters and news media in Argentina, which have been repeated with unusual frequency and gravity in recent times to call upon the government to reverse the climate of direct confrontation towards media and individual journalists and to create the necessary conditions for the task of reporting the news to be carried out within a framework of tolerance of and respect for the role of the press and its work in a democracy to urge the government to cease the arbitrary and discretional use of public resources and state-owned media in a crass official propaganda strategy and one of ongoing insult of independent journalists to be alert that freedom of expression in the country not have a shadow cast over it by hostile and intimidating attitudes and that there be an end to the demonstrations of intolerance of the publication of opinions and news reports that do not coincide with the pretended official policy of telling the truth to ask the government to guarantee equal access by journalists to sources of public information without discrimination of any kind.