It calls for immediate action to ensure his release and physical safety
MIAMI, Florida (May 12, 2015)—The Inter American Press Association (IAPA) today urged the Mexican authorities to carry out diligent and effective investigations to ensure the safe release of a journalist kidnapped in Guerrero, a new act of aggression against the press, in addition to the murder of another member of the press carried out last week in Mexico.
Bernardo Javier Cano Torres works on the radio program “Hora Cero” broadcast by ABC Radio 93.9FM in Iguala, Guerrero state. He was in a vehicle on May 7, along with three other persons when they were abducted, according to local news media. Their whereabouts are unknown, although the kidnappers were understood to have demanded ransom for their release.
IAPA President Gustavo Mohme condemned what he called “a new attack on journalists in Mexico” and urged the authorities “to investigate diligently and effectively to learn the whereabouts of the journalist, and others, kidnapped in the same criminal act.” Mohme, editor of the Lima, Peru, newspaper La República, added that “it is also urgent to improve the mechanisms of protection.”
Guerrero is regarded as one of the most dangerous places to work as a journalist and since September last year has been the focus of international news as a result of the disappearance of 43 students.
Claudio Paolillo, chairman of the IAPA’s Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information and editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay, weekly Búsqueda, added, “It is up to us to denounce and insist with the government that it is its responsibility and its duty to severely punish acts of violence against journalists, and to ensure their safety,” as established in Principle 4 of the Declaration of Chapultepec. “The government should take concrete actions, much more effective ones than those taken up to now, in order to put an end to impunity in these crimes, which is the fuel for murderers to continue killing and the self-censorship that continues in Mexico,” he added.
The Cano Torres case is part of the severe climate of violence that the country is undergoing. On May 4 the body of journalist Armando Saldaña Morales, who had been kidnapped two days previously, was found with signs of beating and four gunshot wounds.
The IAPA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the defense and promotion of freedom of the press and of expression in the Americas. It is made up of more than 1,300 print publications from throughout the Western Hemisphere and is based in Miami, Florida. For more information please go to http://www.sipiapa.org.