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45 journalists killed in Mexico since 2000; rights body appeals for end to impunity

Mexico's National Human Rights Commission (CNDH is its Spanish acronym) appealed to authorities over the weekend to investigate thoroughly the recent killings of a number of journalists here, and to put an end to the impunity for those who kill members of the profession.

Since 2000, 45 journalists have been killed in Mexico, according to the latest missive on the issue from the human rights panel. Those who cover organized crime are especially at risk.

The appeal from the CNDH follows the recent slayings of Miguel Angel Villagomez Valle, editor of the newspaper La Noticia, in Lazaro Cardenas, Michoacan state; David Garcia Monroy, columnist from El Diario, in Chihuahua; and reporter Jose Armando Rodriguez Carreon, also of El Diario, in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua state.

The largest number of killings of journalists has been in Tamaulipas, where nine cases have been  recorded since 2000. Six journalists were slain in Chihuahua, and four in each of the following states: Veracruz, Oaxaca and Michoacan.

The CNDH also refers to the attack on the offices of the Culiacan newspaper El Debate this month, which it said was an attack on the fundamental rights of the newspaper's workers. Two grenades were thrown at the offices in the early-morning hours of Nov. 17. No one was hurt.

Toward the end of last week, the global nonprofit Reporters Without Borders issued a statement appealing to the international community, and especially the United States and Canada, to grant asylum to journalists fleeing Mexico.

Violence against journalists in Mexico has become increasingly intense over the last few years. In 2007, Reporters Without Borders said in its annual report that the country in 2006 was second only to Iraq in dangers for journalists.

Today, the CNDH said that it "deplores...the lack of results from investigations to identify and apprehend those responsible." 

-- Deborah Bonello in Mexico City

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Americans who choose to practice Journalism in Mexico is a lottery ticket to be killed. NPR states that, "Mexico is one of the most dangerous countries for reporters." ( Americans journalist don't realize the risk involved when reporting about a Mexican Cartel, (at this moment they are more powerful then the police/federals and cause high leaders to resign). No one dares to call their bluff. (Committee to Protect Journalist) states that Mexico is the most dangerous countries in the world, and definitely the most dangerous in Latin America, and that Mexico is the only country to have reports of journalist missing. ( These gang members are known for brutal murders, killing in broad daylight, without any care who witnesses it. Many Journalist have been contacted by phone or even up in person with a death threat to them and/or their family. But still many choose to call their bluff. They end up dead. To see a list of those who have been murdered because of journalism is extremely discouraging for those who are interested in becoming a journalist. Also extremely sad to hear many that decide not to go into Tijuana because of these unfortunate events. Tijuana is an amazing city with so many friendly people, too bad the media chooses to ruin that. These people should NOT be reported on. I have personally seen these Cartels in Tijuana, and i tremendously fear them. If i was a journalist and was assigned to cover the Mexican Cartel, I'd quit in a second. Id quit because the media has turned Tijuana into a bloody war-zone, for those who never visited Tijuana they think there are dead bodies everywhere with people shooting people on every corner. The journalist of Tijuana have made a bad reputation among themselves, and i would never want to be part of that team. I go in and out of Tijuana and I see hundreds of faces with love and compassion for one another, but because the media has named Mexico one of the most dangerous countries in the world most people ignore those types of people and label them as drug dealers and murderers. There are some issues that journalist shout keep their nose out of, because we got so many journalist ending up dead, the Tijuana crisis should be left for Mexican journalist to decide what should and should not be published for safety precautions.


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