Monday, May 3, 2010

Castro, cartels, criminals among press “predators”

In commemoration of World Press Freedom Day watchdog group Reporters Without Borders (RSF) identified forty global “predators” who are dangers against the media. "These predators of press freedom have the power to censor, imprison, kidnap, torture and, in the worst cases, murder journalists" according to an RSF statement. RSF named to its list of shame leaders such as China's Hu Jintao and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin as well as criminal organizations like the Italian mafia and Spain’s ETA.

The Americas were not spared of RSF’s anger; Cuban president Raul Castro “has behaved little better than his brother as regards human rights”. Mexican drug gangs were also blacklisted as RSF deemed Mexico as the “most dangerous country for journalists”. Further south, RSF signaled Colombia’s armed groups with threatening the country’s media:
According to RSF, The Black Eagles a paramilitary structure that "continues to spread terror, forcing journalists to self-censorship or exile, when they resort to murder"…

"The death threats directed at journalists, well-known and sometimes at odds with the government of Alvaro Uribe, often bear the signature of the Black Eagles," the group adds.

Regarding the FARC, the organization made the list of "predators" for several reasons including being “behind the abduction of fifty journalists since 1997 and (for making) it practically impossible to work the press in the regions they control. " – [ed. Translated text]
Image- Time (“Monterrey police investigating a 2009 attack on the local offices of Televisa).
Online Sources- AP,, BBC News, Reporters Without Borders, New York Daily News

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