Reporters Without Borders today deplored a new attack on the pro-opposition TV station Globovisión and its secretary-general, Robert Ménard, called on interior and justice minister Diosdado Cabello to announce measures to "put a stop to the repeated physical assaults on journalists that are imperilling the work of the media."
Three of the station’s journalists, Rossana Rodríguez, Felipe Lugo and Wilmer Escalona, were accosted on 21 September by eight armed individuals, apparently supporters of President Hugo Chávez, as they were filming on the Llaguno bridge, a symbolic spot in the centre of Caracas for Chávez people because several were killed there during last April’s attempt to overthrow the president.
The attackers threatened and hit the TV crew’s driver, took the camera and damaged the station’s vehicle. Lina Ron, a well-known Chávez supporter, intervened and the camera was returned, though without the film. A few hours later, Luis Cortez, one of the presumed attackers, was arrested and brought before a court. Information minister Nora Uribe and Vice-President José Vicente Rangel both condemned the attack.
Ménard said he was glad Uribe and Rangel had spoken up and he urged the government to punish those responsible. Globovisión has been the target of two grenade attacks this year.