Mexican president vows to protect journalists

13:02, September 23, 2010      

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Mexican President Felipe Calderon pledged Wednesday to protect journalists in the aftermath of last week's murder of a photographer in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico's most violent city.

In a nationally-televised speech from the Los Pinos official residence,the president said he plans to propose new legislation to the Congress next month to hasten government response to attacks on journalists and step up protection of journalists.

Senior government officials and members of the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) were present during the speech.

According to the National Human Rights Commission, 60 journalists have been murdered in Mexico over the last decade, and many more had suffered intimidation and threats. Mexico's drug traffickers are those most likely to harass or kill the nation's journalists, it said.

"The president recognizes that Mexico is one of the most dangerous nations for journalists to carry out their profession, " said the CPJ's executive president Joel Simon.

Mexican Attorney General Arturo Chavez, also present at the speech, pledged to form a journalist protection committee that includes members from several ministries.

Authorities are also talking about creation of an early warning system and a consultative council to identify the main reasons behind attacks on journalists.

Source: Xinhua


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