Mexico. Execution-style murder of journalist in Guerrero
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on the Mexican authorities to conduct an exhaustive and transparent investigation in the murder of Víctor Fernando Álvarez Chávez, a news website editor in Acapulco, in the western state of Guerrero, and to step up protection for Guerrero’s journalists.
After Víctor Fernando Álvarez Chávez disappeared on 1 April, a body part found a week later was confirmed as his by DNA testing. The Guerrero state prosecutor’s office finally confirmed his death as a case of homicide on 11 April.
A lawyer by training, Álvarez was the founder and editor of Punto x Punto Noticias, an Acapulco-based website for which he covered general and political news. According to the information obtained by RSF, he recently reported receiving threats that were not linked to his journalistic activities.
“The Guerrero authorities investigating this execution-style murder must not neglect any hypothesis and must identify the perpetrators and instigators as quickly as possible,” said Emmanuel Colombié, the head of RSF’s Latin America bureau. “President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s government must also urgently take bold decisions to end the terrible spiral of violence against the media.”
Álvarez was the second journalist to be murdered in Mexico in 2020, following María Elena Ferral Hernández, who was gunned down in the eastern state of Veracruz on 30 March. According to RSF’s tally, a total of 11 journalists have been murdered and one has disappeared in Guerrero since 2000.
Ten journalists were murdered in connection with their work in Mexico last year, making it one of the world’s deadliest countries for media personnel.
Mexico is ranked 144th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index.