IAPA letter to the Pope


Message from the Inter American Press Association

To His Holiness Pope Francis

 Here at the Inter American Press Association, we have received your pilgrimage to these lands with great enthusiasm. Regarding your wishes to familiarize yourself with the concerns of the citizens of the countries that you will visit we would like to share ours with you, especially the systematic violation by the government of Ecuador of the fundamental rights to freedom of expression and of the press. President Rafael Correa has enforced the silencing of all those that dissent from the “official truth,” whether they be news media, social and political organizations, journalists, members of the public in general, members of the opposition, or dissidents. Using propaganda as a battering ram and the Communication Law as an instrument of censorship, he has shut down and punished the media and has imposed a culture of fear which has cut off public debate and the right to freedom of expression for members of the public. If you would allow us to say so, in light of the censorship and interference in editorial content that this government practices, Your Holiness might find yourself required by law to change the title of Laudato Si’ or to have to modify or omit those paragraphs that President Correa regards as not complying with his environmental strategies. Your Holiness, in light of the teachings of Communio et Progessio and other pontifical documents on the role of free expression, communication, and media in modern life, we hope that your words can inspire changes to the official policy of censorship that is practiced by the government of Ecuador—or, at the very least, ease the suffering of those who cannot fully enjoy their inalienable right to freedom of expression. July 5, 2015
Inter American Press Association