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Newspaper photographer assaulted by municipal police officers while covering anti-corruption protest

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 19 May 2008, "Diario Hoy" photographer Víctor Querales Hugás was beaten by municipal police officers when he was taking pictures of a man who had chained himself to a post facing the town hall to protest against alleged corruption and the local administration's delay in solving a problem of his. The event took place in the city of Barquisimeto, the capital of the municipality of Iribarren, in Lara state in central Venezuela.

Querales told IPYS that when he was about to take the picture, a female police officer, whose surname is López, hit him in the face several times, demanding that he hand over his camera. When he refused, other officers joined her and also beat him.

Mayor Henri Falcón apologized to the reporter for what happened and pledged to punish those responsible.

Querales intends to file a complaint with the Public Ministry (Ministerio Público).

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