15 December 2009

Mexico's drug traffickers sentence investigative reporting to death

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Juan Cuevas, editor of a newspaper in the southern state of Guerrero is used to getting phone calls from traffickers. "They tell me: 'You only have to inform. You don't investigate, give your opinion, or editorialize,'" Cuevas tells France's AFP news agency. “We are so fragile, and we are so unprotected that if these people want, they'll come to the office and (kidnap) me or everyone, or attack us."
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Juan Cuevas, editor of a newspaper in the southern state of Guerrero is used to getting phone calls from traffickers. "They tell me: 'You only have to inform. You don't investigate, give your opinion, or editorialize,'" Cuevas tells France's AFP news agency. “We are so fragile, and we are so unprotected that if these people want, they'll come to the office and (kidnap) me or everyone, or attack us." Cuevas is only one example of the helplessness of Mexican journalists, who are victims of violence by drug cartels and clashes with security forces, AFP adds. Mexico is the most dangerous country in the Americas for the press. In response, many journalists and media practice self-censorship. To do investigative journalism in Mexico is to sign one's own death sentence, Mexican journalists told representatives of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Without Borders, on a visit to the country, ANSA adds. Amid the unpunished attacks, journalists from several media in Mexico City and Puebla state have formed a new advocacy group, the National Journalists Front for Freedom of Expression, the Associated Press says. Several journalists also protested outside the Attorney General's Office for the agency's indifference and silence in response to the wave of journalist killings and disappearances, El Universal adds.

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