Afrique Asie Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
Peru11 July 2005

Attack on journalists in northern city joins long list of violations in first half of 2005

Reporters Without Borders today condemned an attack by local residents on three TV journalists in Combayo (in the northern department of Cajamarca) on 8 July, which coincided with the publication by the National Association of Journalists of Peru (ANP) of worrying press freedom violation figures for the first half of 2005.

"We are very concerned by the growing violence that threatens the work of journalists in Peru, in particular, by the increase in physical and verbal attacks against them," Reporters Without Borders said. "We call on the authorities to do what is necessary to give journalists better protection throughout the country and to ensure that last year’s record number of violations is not exceeded this year."

TV reporters Eduardo Liñan Castañeda of Canal 25 and Álvaro Briones of Telenorte and TV cameraman Daniel Urday were physically and verbally assailed by a group of Combayo residents as they were covering a meeting between local officials and residents about the construction of dyke by a mining company. The residents, who oppose the dyke, accused the journalists of bias in favour of the mining company. In the course of the incident, Briones was hit several times and Urday’s camera was smashed.

The 8 July incident joins the long list of 66 press freedom violations registered by the ANP since the start of the year, and which seem to confirm the marked deterioration in the situation of the Peruvian press seen in 2004.

The most striking development is the increase in the number of physical and verbal attacks to 47 in the first half of 2005, compared with 34 in the same period last year. There were also 10 cases of threats and harassment, as well as judicial pressure, the arbitrary arrest of Julio Jara Ladrón de Guevara in January, and break-ins at the home of Marilú Gambini Lostanau in March and May. Most of these press freedom violations took place in Peru’s Andean and Amazonian regions.

The ANP’s figures also show a sharp rise in the number of attacks by members of the public, from nine in the first half of 2004 to 28 in the first half of 2005, indicating such attacks are becoming commonplace and accepted. Attacks by police and security forces rose from eight in the first half of 2004 to 10 in the first half of 2005, while attacks by civilian officials was virtually unchanged (18 in the first half of 2005 as against 17 in the first half of 2004).

In this country
13 January - Peru
In highly suspicious move, terrorism charges brought against left-wing investigative reporter
11 December - Peru
President says jailed TV host should be freed
19 September - Peru
Death threats made against journalist specialising in highly sensitive investigations
9 September - Peru
Impunity blamed for a new wave of threats and attacks on provincial journalists
6 May - Peru
Editor of weekly forced into hiding after death threat

in the annual report
Peru - Annual Report 2008
Peru - Annual report 2007
Peru - Annual report 2006

14 March 2008 - Cuba
No surrender by independent journalists, five years on from “black spring”
5 June 2007 - Venezuela
Closure of Radio Caracas Televisión consolidates media hegemony
22 May 2007 - Colombia
Paramilitary "black eagles" poised to swoop down on press

Americas press releases
3 June - United States
President Obama urged to raise freedom of expression in his Cairo speech
29 May - Venezuela
Open letter to President Hugo Chavez to protest about official hounding of Globovisión
27 May - Mexico
Crime reporter abducted and killed in Durango state
20 May - Cuba
Anyone can browse the Internet... unless they are Cuban
15 May - Cuba
Journalist gets three-year jail sentence

Americas archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives

Sign the petitions
Miguel Galván Gutiérrez
Fabio Prieto Llorente
United States
Chauncey Bailey
A petition to Raúl Castro