07 December 2023

IAPA Bot: Mexico Is Dyed Red for the Second Consecutive Week


Miami (December 7, 2023) - The wave of violence against Latin American journalists and media has painted the region in red and orange hues on the IAPA Bot's heat map.

The first trial for the Pegasus spyware case began on December 4 in Mexico. A protected witness stated that the government of former President Enrique Peña Nieto determined who should be spied on. Among the victims is journalist Carmen Aristegui, winner of the IAPA 2023 Grand Prize for Press Freedom, who expressed fear for her safety.

Also, in Mexico, Artículo 19 condemned the violence by state police against journalists covering protests in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco. The police officers physically assaulted, pushed, and attempted to prevent reporters from recording the events.

In Colombia, six journalists from different outlets were attacked while covering a soccer match between Atlético Nacional and Deportivo Independiente Medellín. They were beaten, insulted, and harassed by fans. The Foundation for Press Freedom (FLIP, in Spanish) condemned the attack.

The College of Journalists (Colper in Spanish) in Costa Rica denounced that media workers are victims of hate messages from organized groups. Yanancy Noguera, president of the organization, condemned the attacks and demanded a response from the Minister of Communication, Jorge Rodríguez.

Costa Rican President Rodrigo Chaves filed a criminal complaint against the newspaper La Nación and the former Minister of Communication, arguing that the newspaper published information based on audio provided by the official.

Independent media in Bolivia are facing extinction. A businessman linked to the MAS party purchased the newspaper Los Tiempos in Cochabamba, one of the few media outlets not belonging to the Valdivia business group. Representatives of the founding family of the newspaper claimed that the government deprived them of official advertising for 18 years and imposed hefty fines.

In Peru, the four accused in the murder of journalist Pedro Flores were acquitted this week. UNESCO stated that only 14% of crimes against journalists are solved.

The Venezuelan NGO Espacio Público recorded 16 freedom of expression violations in November, totaling 349 for the year. Journalists and media faced threats, harassment, intimidation, and censorship.

IAPA Bot is an artificial intelligence tool of the Inter American Press Association that monitors press freedom violations in real time. It tracks information published in the media, Google News, Twitter, and from a selection of IAPA notes and denunciations. In addition, it contains a heat map that allows observing the press freedom climate in each country, a button to make complaints, and a menu that highlights the statements of government leaders, citizens' conversations, and relevant events.

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 in the Western Hemisphere, based in Miami, Florida, United States.