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Congress initiates process to make crimes against journalists a federal offence, debate over definition of journalist

(CEPET/IFEX) - The following is an abridged version of an 11 September 2008 CEPET press release:

Mexico, 11 September 2008. After reviewing a series of proposals submitted by civil society groups, legislators and government bodies, Congress has initiated a process to develop a proposal that would make crimes against journalists a federal offence. The Congress's Special Commission on Crimes against Journalists and Media Outlets has promised to present a bill to this effect within the next four months.

Within the proposal the appropriateness of defining who is and who is not a journalist will also be considered since the definition is not well established in Mexican legislation. Some freedom of expression groups have expressed concerns that creating a legal definition of the term "journalist" could result in restrictions on access to information.

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