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Explosive detonated outside journalist's home

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 25 February 2010, an explosive device was detonated outside the home of William Ribadeneira, news director of Radio Bonita station, in the city of Macas, in southwestern Ecuador. The incident took place early in the morning and the explosion was heard by Ribadeneira's neighbours.

Ribadeneira said that in January he received several threatening calls to his cellular phone, warning him that "he would have to face the consequences." According to the journalist, these messages were a result of the radio station's coverage of a series of accusations about the presence of undocumented Colombian and Peruvian moneylenders and the sale of drugs in bars in Macas.

According to Ribadeneira, Radio Bonita is the only media outlet that has reported on these activities, some of which involve authorities and judges in the province.

The journalist filed a complaint about the explosion at his home with the Public Prosecutor's Office. Government officials and the police have offered to provide him with protection.

IPYS and FUNDAMEDIOS call on the authorities to identify those responsible for placing the explosive by Ribadeneira's home and to ensure the journalist's safety.

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