Two journalists were murdered Monday, May 9 in Mexico, judicial authorities said, bringing the number of informants killed in the country to eleven since the beginning of the year according to the count of NGOs, mainly in States plagued by narco-violence.
Yessenia Mollinedo, director of the El Veraz news portal, and Sheila García, cameraman, were shot dead in Cosoleacaque in the eastern state of Veracruz, the prosecution said in a statement. “We will follow all leads of investigation” to determine the motives of the crime “including their journalistic activity”said prosecutor Verónica Hernández, quoted in the text.
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The federal government and the state government of Veracruz “will work together to solve their deaths. We are committed to ensuring that there is no impunity”assured on Twitter the head of communication of the presidency of the Republic, Jesus Ramirez.
This double homicide comes four days after the assassination on Thursday of Luis Enrique Ramírez, columnist for the newspaper “El Debate”, in the state of Sinaloa (northwest).
This was the ninth informant killed since the beginning of the year, according to press freedom NGOs Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and Articulo 19.
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Article 19 “condemns and documents the murder of journalists Yesenia Mullinedo Falconi y Sheila Johana García Olivera”, said the NGO on Twitter. RSF has just shared the message from the general prosecutor’s office announcing the opening of an investigation.
According to activists, journalists have to pursue other professional activities because of their precarious situation. The governor of Veracruz, Cuitláhuac García, indicated that a device had been put in place to arrest the assassins. Impunity is often the norm in the murders of journalists in Mexico.
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On Monday, journalists demonstrated in central Mexico City demanding “an end to violence and murders of journalists in Mexico”. Also on Monday, European Union (EU) Ambassador to Mexico Gautier Mignot said Brussels would continue to support journalists and human rights defenders under threat in Mexico.
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“The objective is that we respect their work and their physical and psychological integrity”, he said on the occasion of Europe Day, a few hours before the announcement of the two new assassinations. The European Parliament voted in March for a resolution calling on Mexico to do more to protect journalists. MEPs criticized President Lopez Obrador for using a “insulting and stigmatizing rhetoric” towards journalists “under the pretext of fighting false information”.
The Mexican president had in return accused MEPs of joining “like sheep with a reactionary and putschist strategy” of his opponents. With some 150 journalists murdered since 2000, Mexico is one of the most dangerous countries for the press in the world, according to RSF.