In Mexico, Murders Of Journalists Go Unpunished

By Jorge Valencia
Published: Tuesday, October 29, 2019 - 5:10pm
Updated: Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - 8:30am

Mexico continues to be one of the worst countries in the world when it comes to prosecuting the murder of journalists, according to a list released Tuesday by the Committee to Protect Journalists. 

Several of the countries on the Global Impunity Index contain war zones, as is the case with Syria and South Sudan, but Mexico is right behind them, ranked at No. 7.

The long-term effect of this impunity has been that large swaths of Mexico have become “silence zones,” said Jan-Albert Hootson, Mexico representative of the nonprofit Committee to Protect Journalists. 

In those areas — which include the states of Tamaulipas and Chihuahua along the Texas border, Veracruz on the gulf coast, and Guerrero along the Pacific — journalists no longer report on abuse of power, human rights violations, organized crime or corruption, he said. 

“Those journalists stick to unwritten rules,” Hootsen said. “You can write this, and you won't be attacked, or you can write that and you will be attacked.”

As impunity worsens, more journalists will sensor themselves, Hootsen said. He adds that Mexico, at least on paper, has the federal and local institutions to prosecute the murder of journalists.