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.

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 NarcoNews.com. Many issues were discussed, including the lack of unity amongst journalists and the increasing violence against the profession.

Local expats unhappy over Oaxaca story

This is an exact copy of the story published in the News today that originated from yesterday’s blog post, which you can read here. This version includes comments from the author of the Washington Post article in question. The News does not yet have a website. You can see reader comments on the initial post, linked above. Continue reading

Washington Post article on Oaxaca gets a beating

An article published in this weekend’s Washington Post, called “Oaxaca: One Year Later”, has prompted heavy criticism from people living in the southern Mexican state which this time last year was the scene of huge civil unrest and what one critic describes as ‘some of the worst human rights abuses in recent Mexican history; detaining, torturing, and raping men, women, and children who had taken to the streets demanding social and economic justice.’ (Please see comments below for a response from the author).

The writer takes the reader to a number of local restaurants and businesses in Oaxaca, whilst attempting to trace the events of last year, which culminated in the deaths of reportedly as many as 23 people.

But a local film-maker and others living in the city today have attacked the article for its lack of insight into the problems that ravaged Oaxaca tweleve months ago, in which IndyMedia journalist Brad Will was killed, as well as a local teacher and an unconfirmed number of other people. Continue reading

Brad Will shot at close range, says investigation

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.Brad Will was shot by an assailant (s) just 50 centimeters away, and not from a distance of 30 meters as originally thought, according to the latest findings of the investigation of the Attorney General on the case in Mexico.

Results from the investigation into the death of the American IndyMedia journalist, shot dead in Oaxaca just over a year ago, suggest that he could have been killed by fellow protesters or members of the People’s Assembly of Oaxaca (APPO), as well as government agents or infiltrators, according to newspaper reports in Mexico last week.

The finding that he was shot at such close range contrasts with past reports on the murder of the media worker, which placed his assassins at more than 30 meters from him, and also goes against evidence and reports that suggest that Will was in fact murdered by Government sympathisers or agents. Continue reading