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Grenades thrown into newspaper office

(CEPET/IFEX) - In the early hours of 17 November 2008, two grenades were thrown into the offices of "El Debate" newspaper in Culiacán, Sinaloa state, northern Mexico. No one was injured as a result of the attack.

According to information published by the newspaper, at approximately midnight two people threw two grenades into the building's main entrance area and then escaped via the city's Madero Boulevard, heading towards Rivapalacio Avenue.

Upon hearing the explosions, security personnel investigated what had happened and informed the authorities.

The blasts damaged a security booth, broke the windows in the main entrance and left a hole in the floor where one of the grenades exploded. The walls and the metal gates surrounding the entrance also showed signs of damage. Two fuses and one of the safety pins from the grenades were found at the site.

State police, federal agents, army officers and municipal transit authorities arrived shortly after the attack and cordoned off the area. The authorities searched for the individuals responsible for the attack but were unable to find them.

The newspaper revealed that this was the second act of intimidation that it has experienced. The previous week, unidentified individuals left a mock human head in a black bag at one of the newspaper's entrances. Glued to the package was a poster with the most wanted criminals in the country, issued by the State Attorney General's Office (Procuraduría General de Justicia del Estado).

The State Attorney General's Office obtained evidence for its investigation of the incident.

Recently, the journalism community in northern Mexico has been subject to an intense level of aggression. On 13 November, Armado Rodríguez Carreón, a reporter who had a long history of covering the crime beat, was assassinated in the state of Chihuahau, on the border with the United States.

CEPET strongly condemns the attack on "El Debate" and urgently calls on the authorities to investigate the incident and bring those responsible to justice.

For further information on the Rodríguez case, see: http://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/98510

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