Journalists is the Mexican state of Veracruz marched over the weekend to demand protection for journalists and for the government find and prosecute those responsible for killing investigative journalist Regina Martinez.
Government officials say they have the killer of Martinez, who was found beaten and suffocated in her house. But her co-workers don’t believe them.
The man convicted of the murder is Jorge Antonio Hernandez Silva. According to the government versions, Martinez was killed because she interrupted a robbery by Hernandez Silva.
Unfortunately for the government, Hernandez Silva says he was forced to confess after being tortured for several days. The editors at Martinez’s publication, Proceso, don’t accept the government story, pointing out that none of the fingerprints in the Martinez apartment match Hernandez Silva.
The local authorities did not do themselves any favors when, according to Proceso, some current and former state officials issued orders to capture a reporter who questioned the verdict and “to do him harm if he resists.”
After the national government stepped in and expressed its skepticism of the local version of events, Veracruz Gov. Javier Duarte met with editors of Proceso and promised a full investigation.
See original story: Mexican journalists march against attacks on press
Mexico has become one of the most dangerous countries for journalists. The threat comes from drug cartels and corrupted government officials. Since 1992, 28 journalists and media workers have been killed in Mexico. Of those 28 cases, 22 have not been solved.
The national government has stepped up its efforts to protect journalists and to deal with the lack of action by local governments.
Late last week the national legislature passed a bill giving the federal government jurisdiction over crimes against journalists. It only awaits the president’s signature.
Read more about the bill and the problem of impunity in Mexico: In Mexico, a movement and a bill against impunity