Americas - Reports
The report documents how the accumulation of power in the executive and the erosion of human rights protections have allowed the Chávez government to intimidate, censor, and prosecute critics and perceived opponents.
During Chávez’ 14-year period in power, his government has elaborated a sophisticated and aggressive model to control independent media.
"Everyone feels vulnerable," said Mavis Cruz, director of the news program Noticias a la Hora on Radio Libertad in San Pedro Sula. But rather than coming together to face this crisis, Honduran journalists are deeply divided and suspicious of one another.
In an interview with IPI associate Scott Griffen, Wesley Gibbings, President of the Association of Caribbean Media Workers, explains how criminal defamation laws affect the profession of journalism in the Caribbean.
(Freedom House/IFEX) - 4 June 2012 - The following is a Freedom House Freedom at Issue blog item:
ARTICLE 19 has called upon member states of the United Nations to highlight freedom of expression and information in Brazil at the country’s upcoming Universal Periodic Review on 25 May 2012.
El Salvador's new generation of journalists would do well to be proactive, to work together, and to speak as one on the issues that endanger them all, says CPJ.
CPJ, CAFOD and The Guardian have developed ‘The Silenced: Fighting for Press Freedom in Mexico’, a photo exhibition that will mark the courage and determination of ‘The Silenced’ and those who continue to fight to tell the truth about the Latin American drug cartels, despite the risks.
ARTICLE 19, APRODEH, IPYS and Suma Ciudadana note that during the first UPR cycle, the Peruvian Government received a number of recommendations related to freedom of expression issues.
The report outlines areas where the country has failed to meet its legal obligations to protect freedom of expression.
Attacks against the media, journalists and members of the public who were exercising their right to free expression increased, in comparison with the same time period in previous years.
The report reveals that while the media environment in the globalised metropolises appears increasingly healthy, journalists working outside the centres of federal power continue to be targeted by drug cartels, powerful local politicians, and others who fear the consequences of investigative reporting.
The report revealed increases in attacks on journalists in 2011, showing that the authorities are still not doing their job.
According to ARTICLE 19's statement, in 2011 only a few countries in the region proposed changes to their constitutions which substantially affect freedom of expression.
One of the most significant obstacles to press freedom in Latin America is the autocratic regional and local authorities who view investigative reporting as a threat to their otherwise unchecked power.
According to the report, the aggressions reached their climax towards the middle of the year, sometimes a bit before or a bit later, due to specific situations such as general elections in Peru or the lawsuit for millions of dollars against the newspaper "El Universo" in Ecuador.
The gangs, known in Spanish as bandas criminales or "bacrim," are the offspring of right-wing paramilitary death squads that fought the country's Marxist guerrillas and trafficked cocaine.
According to the records, most of the aggressions were initiated by public officials; 18.59% of these by the President.
Decriminalization is urgent in Peru, where a promising reform of the criminal code approved in July 2011 has not yet been enacted.
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IAPA concluded that this was one of the most “challenging and tragic” years for the countries of the Americas and reaffirmed its commitment to confront the next challenges.