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Police officer killed after investigating threats against Honduran journalist

Rubén Rolando Méndez Montenegro, an officer with the National Police Special Forces in charge of investigating threats and attacks against journalist José Luis Galdámez Álvarez and his family, was shot to death in Tegucigalpa on 19 August 2013.

According to the director of the Honduras Centre for Human Rights Research and Promotion (CIPRODEH), Wilfredo Méndez, the violent death of the police officer could be a warning about the future murder of journalist Galdámez.

Galdámez said that this year he had met with officer Méndez a few times to discuss progress in the investigations of attacks and threats against him that had taken place since 2009.

CIPRODEH documentation shows that Méndez was the Honduran state's representative in matters concerning precautionary measures granted by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) for Galdámez and his family.

Since 2010 the IACHR granted provisional and precautionary measures for the journalist, making Honduras responsible for providing these protective measures for Galdámez and his family.

CIPRODEH noted in a report on precautionary measures and the deteriorating state of press freedom in Honduras in 2009 that the absence of political will of the ruling authorities was the main cause for the measures not being carried out.

In 2010 Galdámez took refuge for three months in the Brazilian embassy in Honduras, alongside ousted President José Zelaya Rosales, and in 2011 he targeted various times by armed individuals.

(Please note this is an abridged translation.)

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