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UNESCO condemns third killing of journalist in Honduras in less than a month

24-03-2010 (Paris)
UNESCO condemns third killing of journalist in Honduras in less than a month
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, condemned the murder of Honduran journalist Nahúm Palacios Arteaga. According to press reports, Mr Arteaga’s car was riddled with bullets by two gunmen on 14 March in Tocoa, northern Honduras. He is the third journalist to be killed in the country this year.
“The murder of Mr Nahúm Palacios Arteaga is a denial of freedom of information, a fundamental right that is a cornerstone of a democratic society,” declared Ms Bokova. “I call on the authorities to do their utmost to bring the perpetrators to justice, to show that impunity will not be tolerated in Honduras.”

Nahúm Palacios Arteaga, 34, was the news director for television channel Canal 5 in Aguán and host of a news programme on Radio Tocoa. Another person travelling in the car with him was severely wounded and a cameraman riding in the back was grazed by a bullet. Reports said investigators found 42 bullet holes in the car.

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) noted that the victim had received death threats. He had covered drug trafficking, local politics and an agrarian conflict between landowners and peasants in the Aguán region.

The International Press Institute (IPI) expressed its grave concern at the rise in deadly attacks against journalists in Honduras. The IPI ranks Honduras the second most dangerous country for journalists this year, after Mexico. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) regretted that authorities had not provided the journalist with protection.

UNESCO is the only United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”
Related themes/countries

      · Honduras
      · Press Freedom
      · UNESCO Remembers Assassinated Journalists
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