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Mexicans protest journalist killings, call for justice

Wednesday saw protests by Mexican journalists who took to the streets to decry the murders of reporters and demand an end to the impunity of perpetrators.

About an hour ago, local journalist Fredid Román was shot and killed in the city of #Chilpancingo, #Guerrero. He is at least the 15th journalist killed this year in Mexico.

by @HuasoBB @laoctavadigital

— Borderland Beat (@Borderland_Beat) August 22, 2022

The killing of Freddie “Fredy” Roman on Monday was the last straw for Mexican journalists. The man was ambushed in the city of Chilpancingo by armed attackers on a motorcycle, local media said.

To commemorate the journalist, a vigil was held outside Mexico’s Prosecutor’s Office in Mexico City, where portraits of murdered journalists and signs demanding justice gleamed against candlelight.

Fredy Román was killed today in Chilpancingo, Guerrero. At least 15 journalists have been killed in Mexico in 2022. In his last column, Fredy critiqued the govt’s response in the case of the 43 students from Ayotzinapa,“It was a State crime without attaching blamed to the boss.”

— Voices in Movement (@VIM_Media) August 23, 2022

The murder of Mr Roman seems related to his investigation into the disappearance of 43 students in 2014. The journalist was eliminated just after posting a column on the alleged involvement of local politicians in the mysterious vanishing, which investigators called a “state crime” last week.

August was darkened by at least three other Mexican journalist murders and at least 18 others so far this year, according to human rights organisation Article 19.

Now media freedom-centred organisations embark on a difficult mission to determine whether the killing of Mr Roman may have been linked to his profession and investigation.

Article 19 called this year the deadliest for Mexican journalists on record. Persecution and violence against the press have soared under President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s administration, the organisation said. He took office in 2018.

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