Calderon should accept Merida’s human right conditions?

In anticipation of the scheduled debate around the controversial Merida Initiative aid package in the US Senate this week, the Financial Times newspaper from the UK urges President Felipe Calderon to accept the human rights conditions attached to the US$400 billion injection aimed at helping Mexico fights its drugs barons. But should he? Continue reading


Rights group attacks impunity in Mexico

article19The limited attempts of the Mexican Government to tackle the high levels of violence against journalists testifies ‘to the inability or unwillingness of the Mexican authorities to make the fight against impunity,’ according to Article19, the freedom of expression NGO.

Dr. Agnes Callamard, executive director of the group, said in a statement that the impunity enjoyed by those responsible for violence against journalists is ‘one of the most alarming characteristics of the overall human rights situation in Mexico’.

Mexico is still the deadliest country in the Americas for journalists, according to Reporters Without Borders. Continue reading

Brad Will’s parents announce indy investigation into journo’s death

The one-year anniversary of the death of Brad Will will be marked today in New York, Oaxaca and no doubt other places around the world.Kathy and Hardy Will, parents of the Indymedia journalist Brad Will who was shot dead in Oaxaca more than a year ago, have branded the Mexican investigation into the journalist’s death “frustrating and disappointing” for its failure to find those responsible.

Will was shot dead by plain-clothed armed men on October 27th 2006 whilst covering the social disturbances in Oaxaca surrounding a teacher’s strike. The killing brought the death-toll of journalists in Mexico in 2006 to nine – the county is experiencing increasingly high levels of violence against journalists. It was purported to be the second most dangerous place to work in the world as a journalist after Iraq in 2006.

An investigation at the end of last year by the Attorney General on the case suggested that Will had been shot at close range. But Kathy and Hardy Will dismissed those findings as “illogical and irrational” and have announced that the American non-governmental organisation Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) will conduct an independent investigation. Continue reading

Video: the shooting of Brad Will

It occurred to me that many of you may as yet have not seen the last few minutes of the life of journalist Brad Will – he taped his own shooting. It is strong stuff: be warned. This is a link to the video on YouTube.

Mexico still deadliest country in the Americas for journalists, says RWB

rwbMexico remains the deadliest country in the Americas for journalists with two murders in less than a month, and three disappearances, according to today’s annual report from Reporters Without Borders. Three journalists were murdered last year, and three media workers were shot dead.

Those levels are an improvement on 2006, when nine journalists were killed, but 2008 is looking grim if the stats are to be believed. As many journalists were killed last week than in the whole of last year. Continue reading

New Year, Old Problems for Journalists in Mexico

Although one hates to be a pessimist, the coming year is still looking grim for journalists in Mexico.

Despite the fact that the numbers of murdered journalists declined last year, levels of violence against them are on the rise and the Government is showing no increase in willingness to investigate cases of murder, violence and intimidation against members of the profession. Continue reading

Oaxaca Reporters Tell of Life in the Trenches

‘Alternative media’ in Oaxaca, Mexico, means graffiti, not the internet. Nancy Davies comments on the latest meeting of Oaxacan journalists this weekend on Many issues were discussed, including the lack of unity amongst journalists and the increasing violence against the profession.