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Two grenade attacks on media in 48 hours should be seen as “serious warning”

first_img to go further MexicoAmericas Reporter murdered in northwestern Mexico’s Sonora state News RSF_en Organisation The government should regard two grenade attacks this week on news media in northern Mexico – one against Televisa in Piedras Negras and one against a local newspaper in Monterrey – as a serious warning and should speed implementation of a federal-level convention on the protection of journalists that was signed in November.There were a total of seven direct armed attacks on news media in 2010 alone, compared with 18 over the last five years, according to the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH). Televisa, the national TV network, was repeatedly targeted last year.In the first of this week’s attacks, two fragmentation grenades were thrown at the Televisa branch in Piedras Negras, in the state of Coahuila, on 9 January but did not explode. This was just a few hours after a criminal organization threatened a “media purge” of journalists whose coverage of the “narco-war” was “biased”. Shortly thereafter, someone hacked into the Multimedios website in order to start a rumour that Nuevo León governor Rodrigo Medina had been murdered.In the second attack, assailants threw a grenade and fired shots with heavy-calibre firearms at the headquarters of El Norte, a local daily in the south of Monterrey, in the state of Nuevo León, but fortunately no one was injured. A grey TrailBlazer SUV pulled up outside, a man got out of the front passenger door and hurled a grenade that exploded against the building’s facade. It was the second time the newspaper has been attacked in the same way. Fortunately no one was seriously hurt in the first attack, on 20 September, either.Coahuila and Nuevo León have been among the most dangerous regions of the country since the start of the federal offensive against drug-trafficking in December 2006. Some 50,000 soldiers have been mobilised for this undeclared war which left a toll of 15,723 dead in 2010 alone according to an AFP tally, out of a total of 30,000.Another hundred or so have been killed since 1 January and the media continue to be one of the main targets. The armed violence and physical attacks on journalists are being accompanied by major pressure on the media.Reporters Without Borders, which is a seeking a consultative role with the Risk Evaluation Committee that the government has created under the new convention on the protection of journalists, supports the “No more blood” campaign that 10 cartoonists launch this week with a cartoon by Alejandro Magallanes. It has been taken up on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Basta-de-Sangre/192545064093366) and Twitter. MexicoAmericas Follow the news on Mexico News May 13, 2021 Find out morecenter_img Reports April 28, 2021 Find out more News 2011-2020: A study of journalist murders in Latin America confirms the importance of strengthening protection policies January 13, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Two grenade attacks on media in 48 hours should be seen as “serious warning” May 5, 2021 Find out more Help by sharing this information Receive email alerts NSO Group hasn’t kept its promises on human rights, RSF and other NGOs saylast_img read more