Impunidad / Perú

WHEREAS on April 21, 2004, Alberto Rivera Fernández, host of the program “Transparencia” on Radio Frecuencia Oriental of Pucallpa was murdered WHEREAS the physical perpetrators were convicted, but not so the presumed masterminds and in oral testimony against the latter numerous irregularities were revealed WHEREAS on January 27 the Transitory Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court declared invalid the decision of the Third Penal Chamber with Free Defendants of the Superior Court of Lima, which absolved the supposed masterminds of the crime against Ribera, the former mayor of the provincial municipality of Coronel Portillo, Luis Valdez Villacorta and the city manager, Solio Ruiz, and ordered a new trial However, the Supreme Court did not speak to the petition from the attorneys of the family of journalist Rivera Fernández to have the case reviewed by the National Penal Chamber. Since October 2010 the competence of the National Penal Chamber and of the Supra-provincial Penal Courts of Lima has been broadened to cover the following crimes against journalists in the exercise of their functions: homicide, murder, grave injury, abduction and extortion WHEREAS on May 16 the trial was restarted in the Second Criminal Chamber with Free Defendants of the Superior Court of Justice of Lima, presided over by rapporteur Jorge Egoavil Abad and made up by Jorge Barreto Herrera and Maria Rosario Hernández Espinoza; to the present date the Chamber has heard a number of witnesses and reviewed audios and evidence made available by the Supreme Court WHEREAS impunity in crimes against journalists remains intact in Peru, as shown by the cases of journalist Pedro Yauri of Radio Huanta 2000, Jaime Ayala, correspondent of the newspaper La República in Ayacucho, who was seen for the last time in 1984 entering the Los Cabitos Military Base, and the twentieth anniversary of the murder of Melissa Alfaro, head of information for the weekly Cambio, the result of the explosion of a letter-bomb sent to the paper WHEREAS Principle 4 of the Declaration of Chapultepec states: 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 THE IAPA 67 GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLVES to express to judicial authorities of Peru its profound concern for the impunity of the murder of journalist Alberto Rivera Fernández, which would set an ominous precedent for freedom of the press and expression in the country.