Afrique Asie Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
Brazil3 September 2008

Call for boost to media safety ahead of elections after journalist injured in Mato Grosso do Sul state

Reporters Without Borders today voiced concern and called for security to be stepped up for the press ahead of local elections after a political journalist and editorialist in Mato Grosso do Sul state in central-western Brazil was injured in a bomb blast.

Neiva Pinheiro Veiga, aged 46, director of the bi-weekly O Liberal was hurt by shards from a home-made bomb thrown into a crowd as she was leaving a meeting called by the outgoing mayor of Japorã, Rubens Freire Marinho, on the 30 August.

She also suffered first and second degree burns to her legs and a child in the crowd suffered slight injuries. Witnesses said they saw a young man throw the bomb and police quickly arrested Júnior Rodrigues da Silva, aged 27, living in Itaquiraí. He denied all involvement in the bombing.

The attack on Neiva Veiga could be down to political motives, given that on the day it happened she had just been named at the head of the centre-left Democratic Labour Party (PDT) for Mundo Novo where she lives. Neiva Veiga is also highly critical in her editorials of politicians in the region.

In the run-up to municipal elections on 5 October, the worldwide press freedom organisation called on state governments and federal authorities to ensure better security for journalists covering them.

“Fortunately, Neiva Veiga’s life is not in danger. We express our support for her newspaper and in particular its editor, Celso Maciel Veiga, who is her husband. We welcome the fact that a suspect was quickly arrested. However, we would like to point out that as the country enters the local election campaign, we fear that in some regions the press, particularly local, is exposed to threats and intimidation,” the organisation said.

“We therefore recommend the greatest vigilance to the state governments and federal authorities. We also hope, that in the very near future, the motive will be uncovered for the attack on Neiva Veiga”, it added.



In this country
1 May - Brazil
Victory as federal supreme court repeals dictatorship era press law
12 December - Brazil
Four new arrests in investigation into abduction of O Dia employees
23 July - Brazil
Legislators urged to oppose cyber-crime bill likely to threaten online free expression
9 July - Brazil
A Folha de São Paulo and Veja win appeal against “premature electoral propaganda” fines
23 June - Brazil
Shots fired at Manaus daily after stories about another Amazon city’s corruption links

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


reports
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
archives

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
Cuba
Miguel Galván Gutiérrez
Cuba
Fabio Prieto Llorente
United States
Chauncey Bailey
A petition to Raúl Castro