On 23 July, journalists Isaían Mandujano and Ángeles Mariscal, correspondents in the state of Chiapas for the magazine Proceso and the daily newspaper La Jornada respectively, denounced a recent campaign of slander organized against their persons and their work; they claim this campaign to have actively involved media-sources dependent upon the state government of Chiapas. Indeed, the Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression and Attention to Human-Rights Defenders that pertains to the Human-Rights Commission of Mexico City (CDHDF) made public its repudiation of the campaign of defamation that has targeted Mandujano and Mariscal, for, in its analysis, the work of both journalists has led them both to be harassed and intimidated by state authorities in Chiapas.
Mandujano and Mariscal have disclosed that they recently have been covering different social organizations in Chiapas that, according to the CDHDF’s communiqué, “have differences of perception and of criteria with local authorities, [that] have expressed criticisms, value-judgments, and considerations that could bother some public servants of the state government.” As a result, they have experienced a campaign of defamation against them by means of different media-sources, including those pertaining to the state government, for example the Chiapas Radio System. In light of this, the CDHDF has declared authorities to have the obligation to “abstain from exercising all means, whether direct or indirect, that can limit the right of the governed to knowledge and the right of freedom of expression of people in general, and of journalists in particular.” In its communiqué, the organization denounced that “acts like these contribute to the inhibition of journalistic exercise, freedom of expression, and the right to information, in addition to increasing the risk faced by those who engage in journalism in the state of Chiapas, as in the country generally.” This position is shared by the Foundation for the Freedom of Expression, which on 23 July demanded “the intervention of governor Sabines so that instructions be carried out by those responsible for them, towards avoiding the use of public resrouces for the limitation of freedom of expression.”
For more information:
CDHDF repudiates campaign against correspondents (El Universal, 23 July)
CDHDF communiqué (23 July)
Fundalex rejects aggression against journalists in Chiapas (Redacción Poblanerías, 23 July)