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IFJ Blasts Authorities over Failure to Stop Killings of Journalists after Veteran Murder in Mexico

May 28, 2009

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today blamed the Mexican authorities for failing to tackle the killings of journalists following the murder of veteran journalist, Eliseo Barrón Laguna, who worked for La Opinión, a newspaper of Torreón, Coahuila (north). The crime reporter became the fifth Mexican journalist killed in 2009.

"After dozens of journalists' killings in Mexico over recent years, only a few have been properly investigated," said Paco Audije, Deputy Secretary General of the IFJ. "The authorities are yet to show any resolve to end the impunity for journalists' killers. This is not only an affront to the media community, but also to the civil liberties of the Mexican society as a whole."

According to media reports, the body of Eliseo Barron was found in a ditch early on Tuesday 26 May, hours after he had been abducted by gunmen at his home in the town of Gomez Palacio in the northern Mexican state of Durango. The kidnapping took place in front of members of his family who were also threatened.

In a statement, the Sindicato Nacional de Redactores de la Prensa de México (SNRP) said that Barron's murder took place a day before the presentation of the award of the National Prize of Mexican Journalism.

The IFJ says this attack showed the level of impunity in Mexico which, a country described by the Federation of Latin American and the Caribbean Journalists (FEPALC) as the most dangerous for journalists.

"No one should be under the illusion that we will forget Barron", said Zuliana Láinez, Secretary of FEPALC for human rights. "We will keep alive the memory of the victims until we get justice."

The IFJ and FEPALC share the grief of Eliseo Barrón's family and demand the General Prosecution Service of Mexico and its Secretary of Public Federal Security to make good on their promise to capture his murderers and to bring them to justice.

For more information contact:
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ)
Phone: +32 2 235 2207

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