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Targeted Honduran journalist escapes shooting unharmed

Journalist Fidelina Sandoval, of Globo TV, was the target of an attack just outside the TV station at 8:25a.m. on 8 April 2013, her birthday.

Sandoval had just finished having breakfast with a colleague when she saw a grey van on Boulevar Morazán and two men in the front seats. She had a bad feeling so instead of crossing the street towards it, she turned back. Seconds later she heard shots fired behind her.

She checked to make sure she was not injured and looked around for anyone that might have been hurt. Sandoval approached some guards and a taxi driver who asked her, "Do you have any enemies? Because those people were firing at you." It was only then that she realised she had been the target of the shooting.

Sandoval said that a week earlier she had reported on the purging of the police department and the murder of peasants in Bajo Aguan. Afterwards, she received two strange calls asking her for personal information.

The journalist also said that on 4 April she broadcast an interview in which Police Commissioner Aldo Oliva gave details of the police clean-up.

After the attack, Sandoval was assisted by her colleagues who took her to the Honduran Committee for the Families of the Detained and the Disappeared (COFADEH) to report the incident.

COFADEH and C-Libre told the media that the attack against Sandoval was not an isolated incident and that a timely investigation by the authorities was required.

COFADEH coordinator Bertha Oliva said the attack on Sandoval "was directly linked to her work as a journalist" and made a plea to the international community for the safety of the journalist.

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