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Oaxaca Citizens’ Report – Chapter 5: Journalism and Freedom of Speech

By 8 octubre, 2018 Sin Comentarios

As the UJournalists imgnited Nations prepares to review Mexico’s human rights record in November, civil society organizations in Oaxaca publish their own evaluation, from one of the states with the highest number of violations in the country. In the following series Educa, a contributor to the report, summarizes its main findings:

Oaxaca is the state with the third highest number of attacks against journalists, preceded only by Veracruz and Mexico City. The organization Article 19 documented 15 homicides of journalists between 2000 and 2017, while the Human Rights Ombudsman of Oaxaca initiated 168 complaints of attacks against reporters from 2015 to 2017 alone, with the most frequent grievances being threats, harassment, surveillance, intimidation and physical aggression. Many of these attacks took place while journalists were on the job.

Last year, the Omsbudsman documented 144 attacks against journalists, including 37 against female journalists who were often also the victims of gender-based discrimination. It is alarming, though not surprising, that the main aggressors were public sector employees, with 45 attacks perpetrated by municipal and state employees, police, trade unions and even the Attorney General’s Office.

The impunity rate for these cases is 90%, and last year protective measures were granted to only 17 journalists and one media outlet. Moreover, media companies in Oaxaca are often owned by—and complicit with—political elites, who take advantage of journalists’ paltry wages and lack of a basic social safety net by using bribery and suppression.

In short, despite changes in the political parties governing Oaxaca and the adoption of new mechanisms for the protection of human rights, journalists continue to perform their indispensable labor in fear.


 Download: Under attack. Human Rights in Oaxaca 2013-2018. Citizen report (PDF, 32 pp.)

Infographic: Oaxaca Citizens’ Report