NEW YORK – Mexico is one of the countries where the killers of journalists enjoy the most impunity, according to a ranking published Tuesday by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
According to the New York-based organization, Mexico has not yet resolved the murders of 30 journalists, a number that is only exceeded by The Philippines, with 41 such cases.
The CPJ’s 2019 Global Impunity Index focuses on countries where journalists have been slain but their killers have not yet been brought to justice.
Next, with 25 unsolved murders of journalists, comes Somalia, which has headed the percentage impunity rankings prepared each year by the CPJ, an indicator that calculates the number of unresolved cases as a percentage of a country’s population.
Thus, with its more than 126 million people, the 30 unresolved murders of journalists put Mexico in seventh place in that percentage index.
Ahead of it, besides Somalia, are only Syria, Iraq, South Sudan, The Philippines and Afghanistan, all of which are countries experiencing ongoing armed conflicts.
Following Mexico on the list of the 13 worst countries in terms of impunity for the murders of journalists are Pakistan, Brazil, Bangladesh, Russia, Nigeria and India.
In its ongoing tally, the CPJ has examined the murders of journalists taking place between September 2009 and August 2019.
“The impunity we have witnessed in these countries year after year, and the knowledge that authorities take little action against those who attack the press, cripples the ability of journalists around the world to do their job,” said CPJ Advocacy Director Courtney Radsch in a statement.
“Democratic governments cannot stand silent in the face of impunity if they want to be seen as supporting press freedom. It is imperative that journalists and their families receive the justice they deserve, and that world leaders demand accountability,” Radsch added.
Over the past 10 years, 318 journalists have been killed around the world as a result of their profession and in about 86 percent of the cases those responsible have not been successfully prosecuted, the CPJ said.
Of those, 31 of the murders took place in Mexico, where there has only been one conviction in all those cases, the organization said.
Mexico’s impunity indicator has not stopped getting worse over time, with drug trafficking cartels frequently targeting the press, the CPJ emphasized.
So far this year, Mexico has been the country where the most journalists have been killed, with 11 deaths and five other cases in which it was confirmed that the motive for the attack was the target’s profession, the organization said.
Meanwhile, in 2018, Colombia was the only country that managed to move off the CPJ list after the death in a security operation of Walter Patricio Arizala, alias “Gaucho,” the head of the Oliver Sinisterra front, who had been accused of kidnapping and later killing two journalists working for the Ecuadorian daily El Comercio and their driver.