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Reporters Without Borders Mexico correspondent receives threatening calls

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) strongly condemns the threats directed at Balbina Flores Martínez, who has been a correspondent for RSF in Mexico for 13 years. Balbina Flores, who shares an office with Zócalo magazine and the National Press Workers Union, received three threatening calls on 12 March 2014 to her office phone number.

The calls were made by someone with a male voice who asked if it was Balbina Flores Martínez speaking, and when she answered that it was, the caller said he would call back, which he did only 30 seconds later. In the second call, he told her, “I am Commander Omar Treviño, I am close by and I'm coming from Michoacán with an assignment – someone has hired me to hurt you. I know who you are, where you are and what you do. I have been investigating you for the last 15 days.”

Balbina Flores has presented an account of the incident to the Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Freedom of Expression (FEADLE) of the Federal Attorney General and to the Human Rights Commission in the Federal District. She also reported what happened to the Mechanism for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders and Journalists of the Ministry of the Interior (Segob).

“We call on the protection mechanism to approve urgent and permanent measures for Balbina Flores as soon as possible. This RSF correspondent is someone very dedicated to the protection of journalists who investigate sensitive topics, and these threats will not be taken lightly,” said Camille Soulier, the head of the Reporters Without Borders Americas desk.

Mexico is currently ranked 152 out of 180 countries in the in the 2014 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index

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