MEXICO CITY - The government of Mexico announced Tuesday plans to coordinate with states to protect journalists, following the murders of two reporters on Monday.
At the end of a security meeting with authorities from the state of Guerrero, Interior Secretary Miguel Angel Osorio said the federal government "repudiates and condemns the cowardly attacks on journalists, and, of course, expresses its sincere condolences to the families".
"We clearly understand that in the face of these acts, words are not enough, that a response from the state is needed, that state and federal authorities must continue taking measures to guarantee the journalists' work and to close the doors to impunity," he said.
Osorio said it was for this purpose that Mexico established the Mechanism to Protect Human Rights Defenders and Journalists, a body comprised of representatives from the government and the National Commission on Human Rights, as well as journalists and advocates who jointly assess specific cases and agree on action that should be taken.
But, he said, "it is clear that it is not enough, we have to go further."
Osorio said Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has ordered him to convene an immediate meeting with the governors of all of the country's states to establish joint action aimed at "addressing such an important issue".
Mexican journalists took to the streets on Tuesday to protest the murders of award-winning journalist Javier Valdez, known for his work on drug trafficking, in Sinaloa state, and Jonathan Rodriguez, a reporter at a weekly newspaper, in Jalisco state.
The deaths provoked criticism, and local and international human rights organizations and journalists' groups demanded justice.
In Jalisco's capital, Guadalajara, dozens of journalists gathered outside the State Attorney's Office with photos of journalists who have been killed or disappeared.
The demonstrators carried banners with slogans such as, "When killing a journalist, democracy is stabbed" and "Killing journalists does not kill the truth."
Similar protests were also held elsewhere in the country.