On March 24th, the Washington Office for Latin American Affairs (WOLA) expressed its “great concern about the dangerous upsurge of violence and armed and violent attacks against journalists and human rights defenders in Mexico” in a statement. It recalled that in the first weeks of March alone the murder of journalist Cecilio Pineda Birto (Guerrero), the aggression against Santiago Ambrosio Hernandez, president of the “Committee of Victims for Justice and Truth June 19 Nochixtlán” (Oaxaca), the murder of journalist Ricardo Monlui Cabrera (Veracruz), the armed attack against human rights defender Alma Barraza (Sinaloa) and the murder of journalist Miroslava Breach Velducea (Chihuahua), in addition to the two Raramuris human rights defenders killed in the month of January Isidro Baldenegro and Juan Ontiveros Ramos (Chihuahua) have been recorded.
WOLA stated that the mechanisms for the protection of human rights defenders and journalists of the Ministry of the Interior (SEGOB) and all the country’s attorneys, including the Attorney General’s Office (PGR), “have not been sufficient to prevent attacks against journalists and defenders or to meet their protection needs and that impunity for these cases and for previous attacks and crimes perpetuates and aggravates the cycle of violence and abuse.” WOLA stated that, “the government has to give more than empty promises, generic statements and justifications. They urge specific commitments of the Mexican authorities to protect journalists and human rights defenders and justice for the aggressions against them.”
According to Animal Politico, the protection mechanism for journalists and human rights defenders “has no operating budget for this year, which prevents them from expanding their reach in situations of risk … it could not admit more beneficiaries and will even have to make an evaluation and dismiss some.”
Para más información: Pronunciamiento de WOLA sobre la violencia en contra de periodistas y defensores de DDHH en México (WOLA, 24 de marzo de 2017)
Activistas denuncian ineficacia del Mecanismo de Protección de defensores y periodistas (Proceso, 24 de marzo de 2017) Nos quedaremos sin memoria (Animal Político, 30 de marzo de 2017)
Presupuesto para mecanismo de protección a periodistas en 2017: cero pesos (Aristegui Noticias, 24 de marzo de 2017)
Insuficiente protección a periodistas en México: WOLA (La Jornada, 27 de marzo de 2017)