Saturday, September 3, 2011

Mexican Journalists Murdered in Mexico City

Mexico has become perhaps the most dangerous country for journalists in the world. In 2009, 244 cases of attacks and intimidation against journalists and media workers were registered in Mexico. Eleven of those Mexican journalists were murdered. More were murdered in 2010, and 2011 may surpass that number as Mexican journalists bravely report on government corruption and drug-related crime.

This from Article 19/IFEX:

México., D.F., 2 September 2011 - Marcela Yarce Viveros, head of public relations for "Contralínea" magazine, and Rocío González Trápaga, a former reporter for Televisa, were found dead on Thursday 1 September in a park in the Iztapalapa borough in Mexico City. They were reported missing the previous night.

According to the police report, around 7:00 am, neighbors noticed two bodies behind the San Nicolás Tolentino Pantheon, in Iztapalapa, which were covered by a tarp. Both were found naked, with signs of strangulation and at least one gunshot wound. According to preliminary investigations, González, who was a reporter for Televisa and also contributed to other news services, owned a currency exchange kiosk at the Mexico City International Airport.

Miguel Badillo, director of "Contralínea", said that the last contact he had with Yarce was at 21:00 on Wednesday as she was leaving a meeting. However, an hour later, another company executive spoke with her by telephone. "In the morning we received a call from her family informing us that she had not arrived home that night. We began to look for her and then we heard this awful news," he explained during an interview.

Mexico City Attorney General Miguel Angel Mancera said that while they were not ruling out any line of investigation it appears that Yarce was not carrying out any journalistic investigation for "Contralínea" that could have put her at risk. He explained that for the moment, the authorities are particularly looking into the case of González, who apparently made a large money withdrawal that afternoon.

The last known case of a journalist killed in Mexico City dates back to November 2006, when José Manuel Nava, former director of "Excelsior" newspaper, was attacked in his home.

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