Miami (May 11, 2023) - The Inter American Press Association (IAPA) condemned the murder of a journalist in Colombia and attacks against Argentine reporters. The organization warned about the risks and violence journalists face in the Americas.
In Colombia, Luis Gabriel Pereira, journalist and editor of the digital media Notiorense, was murdered on May 10 while riding his motorcycle in the municipality of Ciénaga de Oro, in the department of Córdoba. Two men on another motorcycle shot him. The 25-year-old journalist covered public order, judicial, political, and security issues. He also worked as a motorcycle taxi driver.
IAPA President Michael Greenspon, Global Head of Licensing & Print Innovation for The New York Times, denounced the murder and urged the authorities "to deepen the investigations until those responsible for the crime are found, their motives are known, and they are brought to justice."
According to the Foundation for Press Freedom (FLIP), Pereira recently published news about femicide. He revealed the alleged assailant's name, which, in addition to other allegations, exposed him to risky situations.
Threats and aggression
In Argentina, journalists and camera operators of the LN+ and C5N channels were beaten and robbed and received threats at gunpoint yesterday during their coverage and live broadcast of a territorial dispute between drug gangs in the Las Antenas neighborhood, La Matanza, Buenos Aires province.
A group of journalists from LN+, among them Ignacio Damonte, were insulted and forced to lie face down on the asphalt. Then, a teenager hit them, pointed at their heads, and kicked one of the cameras with which the victims had recorded the events. At the same place, two armed youths stole the work equipment of a journalist and a cameraman of the C5N channel.
The chairman of the IAPA's Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Carlos Jornet, editor of the newspaper La Voz del Interior of Córdoba, Argentina, reiterated that the organization has been denouncing the advance of criminal groups in Argentina and several countries in the region, which creates "a dangerous climate of insecurity for journalists during the performance of their work."
IAPA authorities urged the governments of Colombia and Argentina to urgently implement public policies to curb violence against journalists by organized crime.
IAPA is a non-profit organization dedicated to defending and promoting freedom of the press and expression in the Americas. It comprises more than 1,300 publications from the Western Hemisphere; and is based in Miami, Florida.