El Sur reporter, Zacarias Cervantes, reported that before 8 pm on November 15th he was stopped by about seven men, including at least one armed man, who bent his arm and forced him to duck his head for about 20 minutes while they were checking his car in downtown Chilpancingo. He said that they took his cell phone without threatening him or giving him any warning. He also said that the attackers left a copy of El Sur‘s previous day’s edition on the passenger seat open on the page where a reporter’s note was published in which he pointed out the lack of progress in the investigations one month after the murder of the founder of the Indigenous Vicente Guerrero Peasant Organization, Ranferi Hernandez Acevedo. While he was held, he could hear that one of the attackers was making a phone call and asking “Do we take him?”.
The Association of Journalists of the State of Guerrero (APEG in its Spanish acronym) described the event as “an act of premeditated intimidation, planned from the [positions of] power to silence him”, and demanded a halt to the aggressions against the union and respect for freedom of expression. They asked the state government to investigate the assault, although they are aware “of what little it will do to resolve it, as has happened with other cases, such as the murders of comrades Francisco Beltran and Cecilio Pineda, which occurred during these two years of the administration.”
The organization defending freedom of expression Article 19 issued an alert after what happened and requested “in accordance with the gravity of the attempted disappearance the implementation of measures aimed at protecting their life, liberty, integrity and security.”
For its part, the Directorate of Social Communication of the State Government said it has a firm commitment to freedom of expression and respect for human rights and invited to formally denounce the event before the corresponding instances.
For more information in Spanish:
Denuncia intimidación el reportero Zacarías Cervantes (El Sur, 16 de noviembre de 2017)
Agreden a reportero del diario ‘El Sur’ en Guerrero (La Jornada, 16 de noviembre de 2017)
Sujetos armados agreden físicamente e intimidan a periodista de El Sur en Guerrero (Artículo 19, 16 de noviembre de 2017)
Intimidan hombres armados y retienen por 20 minutos al reportero de El Sur Zacarías Cervantes (El Sur, 17 de noviembre de 2017)
For more information from SIPAZ:
Guerrero: agresiones contra el corresponsal de Proceso (14 de junio de 2017)
Guerrero : Atacan a balazos a comunicadora originaria de Xochistlahuaca en Ometepec (5 de junio de 2017)
Guerrero : asesinan al periodista Cecilio Pineda (6 de marzo de 2017