May 29, 2017 - Updated on May 30, 2017

International Organizations for Freedom of Expression Urge to Receive Rapporteurs from United Nations and IACHR

Protest against the murder of Mexican journalist Javier Valdez occured in Culiacan, Sinaloa on May 15, 2017, in Monterrey, Mexico, on May 20, 2017. Julio Cesar AGUILAR / AFP
World organizations for the defense and promotion of freedom of expression asked President Peña Nieto to invite the special rapporteurs for Freedom of Expression at the United Nations (UN) and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to find solutions to the crisis of violence and impunity affecting Mexican journalism.

Dismayed by the murder of journalist Javier Valdez on May 15 in Culiacán, the organizations jointly condemned the increase in murders and attacks against journalists during the current six-year term.

The organizations united to “speak with one voice in asking your government to step up its efforts to end the impunity for those who wish to silence journalists and rid the country of the pervasive mentality that believes intimidating an editor or a reporter carries no consequences.”

They highlighted the importance of opening “the door to the above-mentioned special rapporteurs to examine the rising level of violence and propose solutions that tackle impunity, once and for all.” The special rapporteurs for freedom of expression at the UN and the IACHR have made an official request to visit the country to evaluate the situation, yet it has remained unanswered by the Mexican government.

The organizations also urged the government “to sincerely commit itself to engaging in meaningful dialogue and implementing effective solutions on behalf of the profession of journalism, before the environment for freedom of expression worsens any further.

The letter was signed by the directors of the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), Reporters Without Borders (RSF), ARTICLE19, International Center for Journalists (ICFJ), Fundación Nuevo Periodismo Iberoamericano Gabriel García Márquez (FNPI), Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, Rory Peck Trust, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), and Freedom House.