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Media Repression

Community Radio Producers Murdered in Oaxaca

On April 7th, 2008, two indigenous Triqui women who worked at the community radio station La Voz que Rompe el Silencio (The Voice that Breaks the Silence), in the autonomous municipality of San Juan Copala (Mixteca region), were shot and murdered while on their way to Oaxaca City to participate in the State Forum for the Defense of the Rights of the Peoples of Oaxaca. Three other people were injured.

According to the state attorney general, the victims are Teresa Bautista Merino (24 years old) and Felícitas Martínez Sánchez (20 years old). Francisco Vásquez Martínez (30 years old), his wife Cristina Martínez Flores (22 years old), and their son Jaciel Vásquez Martínez (three years old) were also injured in the attack.

According to prelimary reports, the women had left the station, which is part of the Network of Indigenous Community Radio Stations of the Southeast (Red de Radios Comunitarias Indígenas del Sureste), around 1 p.m. They were traveling in a truck on their way to Oaxaca City, but were ambushed on the outskirts of the community of Llano Juarez.

The two community radio activists were supposed to coordinate the working group for Community and Alternative Communication: Community Radio, Video, Press, and Internet, at the State Forum for the Defense of the Rights of the People of Oaxaca, which was to begin on April 9 in the auditorium of the teachers union in Oaxaca. The Center for Community Support Working Together (CACTUS) released a statement denouncing the murders and demanding that the state authorities investigate and punish those responsible for the crime.

The state attorney general said that twenty 7.62 caliber bullet shells were found at the site of the murders, along with other arms including an AK-47. International supporters have been asked to contact their local embassies and consulates and organize demonstrations condemning the paramilitary repression of indigenous women and community media projects.


Felicitas is furthest left, Teresa third from left.


Autonomous Municipality of San Juan Copala, Oaxaca

source: https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2008/04/10/18492065.php

By El Enemigo Común

A bilingual website in solidarity with social movements in Mexico. // Un sitio web bilingüe en solidaridad con los movimientos sociales en México.

4 replies on “Community Radio Producers Murdered in Oaxaca”

Community Radio Producers Murdered in Mexico

April 7th, 2008. Oaxaca, Mexico.
Two indigenous triqui women who worked at the community radio station La Voz que Rompe el Silencio (The Voice that Breaks the Silence), in the autonomous municipality of San Juan Copala (Mixteca region), were shot and murdered while on their way to Oaxaca city to participate in the State Forum for the Defense of the Rights of the Peoples of Oaxaca. Three other people were injured.

According to the State Attorney General, the victims are Teresa Bautista Merino (24 years old) and Felícitas Martínez Sánchez (20 years old). Francisco Vásquez Martínez (30 years old), his wife Cristina Martínez Flores (22 years old), and their son Jaciel Vásquez Martínez (three years old) were also injured in the attack.

According to prelimary reports, the women had left the station, which is part of the Network of Indigenous Community Radio Stations of the Southeast (Red de Radios Comunitarias Indígenas del Sureste), around 1:00 PM. They were travelling in a truck on their way to Oaxaca city, but were ambushed on the outskirts of the community Llano Juarez.

The two community radio activists were supposed to coordinate the working group for Community and Alternative Communication: Community Radio, Video, Press, and Internet, at the State Forum for the Defense of the Rights of the People of Oaxaca, which was to begin the today (Wednesday) in the auditorium of Seccion 22 of the teachers union in Oaxaca. The Center for Community Support Working Together (CACTUS as the spanish acronym) released a communique denouncing the murders and demanding that the state authorities investigate and punish those responsible for the crime.

The state attorney general said that 20 bullet shells, caliber 7.62, were found at the site of the murders, along with other arms including an AK-47. People are encouraged to contact their local embassies and consulates (or to organize demonstrations at their local embassies and consulates) to express their condemnation of this paramilitary repression of indigenous women and community media projects.

A feature film about the struggle for community radio in Southern Mexico is Un Poquito de Tanto Verdad (A Little Bit of So Much Truth)
by Jill Freidberg and Mal de Ojo.

RED DE SOLIDARIDAD
INTERNACIONAL DE AMARC
ACCION URGENTE
…………………………

México, 9 de abril de 2008
AMARC, Art19 y RSF condenan asesinato de dos periodistas comunitarias en México

La Asociación Mundial de Radios Comunitarias de México, Artículo 19 y Reporteros sin Fronteras condenamos el asesinato de dos periodistas comunitarias y exigimos:

1. El esclarecimiento de los hechos ocurridos el día 8 de abril del presente año en la carretera que conduce a San Juan Copala, Oaxaca, que resultaron en el asesinato de Teresa Bautista Merino y Felicitas Martínez Sánchez, periodistas comunitarias de la emisora “La Voz que Rompe el Silencio”.

2. La sanción de los responsables intelectuales y materiales que quitaron la vida a estas periodistas.

3. Garantizar la vida e integridad de los sobrevivientes Faustino Vázquez Martínez, Cristina Martínez Flores y sus dos hijos menores, quienes son testigos clave de los hechos, así la vida e integridad de los demás integrantes de la emisora comunitaria.

4. El cese del clima de impunidad que permite la continuidad de las agresiones, desapariciones y asesinatos en contra de medios comunitarios, así como en contra de periodistas y medios de comunicación en general, lo que hace que México sea el país mas peligroso para el ejercicio periodístico en el continente [ver: rsf.org].

………………………………………

ACCION RECOMENDADA

Enviar notas para exigir el rápido esclarecimiento de los hechos, la sanción de los responsables y dar garantías de seguridad para los testigos y sus hijos.

Felipe Calderón Hinojosa
felipe.calderon (at) presidencia.gob.mx
(55) 5093- 5300 / Fax: 5093-4901

Juan Camilo Mouriño Terrazo
jcmourino (at) segob.gob.mx
(55) 5093-3400

Eduardo Medina Mora Icaza
yess (at) pgr.gob.mx
(55) 5346 0114 / (55) 5346 0115 / Fax: 5346 0908

Ulises Ruiz Ortiz
gobernador (at) oaxaca.gob.mx
(951) 502 05 30 / Fax: (951) 502 05 31

José Luis Soberanes
correo (at) cndh.org.mx
1719-2000 Exts 8293 y 8280

C. Octavio Alberto Orellana Wiarco
Fiscal Especial para la Atención de Delitos Cometidos contra Periodistas
Fax 53 46 43 70

Gustavo Gómez
Director Programa de Legislaciones y Derecho a la Comunicación
AMARC-ALC

la fuente: http://deepdishwavesofchange.blogspot.com/2008/04/community-radio-producers-murdered-in.html

On April 7, two radio reporters from a community radio were ambushed in Putla de Guerrero, Oaxaca, and shot to death. Teresa Bautista Flores, 24, and Felicitas Martínez, 20, two women journalists working for La Voz que Rompe el Silencio (The Voice that Breaks the Silence), were murdered allegedly by paramilitary forces. Three other people were wounded in the shooting: Jaciel Vázquez, aged 3, and his parents.

In an interview with Radio Bemba in Sonora, Mexico, Jorge Albino, coordinator of La Voz que Rompe el Silencio said that the radio station had been receiving death threats since its inception. The station was inaugurated on January 20 to serve the Triqui indigenous community in San Juan Copala, a year after the locality was granted administrative autonomy.

The Mexican branch of the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) said there have been acts of violence against other small radio stations belonging to indigenous groups in Oaxaca, such as Radio Nandia in 2006 and Radio Calenda in 2007. Reporters Without Borders, an international organization created to defend press freedom and journalists under threat, reported that risks run by the press in Oaxaca state are common, where the political climate continues to be tense.

Two journalists were murdered in Oaxaca during a major wave of protests against state governor Ulíses Ruiz Ortíz in 2006. They were Indymedia reporter and U.S. citizen Bradley Will, and Raúl Marcial Pérez, an indigenous community leader and columnist for the regional daily El Gráfico. No one has been brought to justice for their murders.

La Voz que Rompe el Silencio is considered a vital instrument to establish peace in the region, said Jorge Albino in his interview with Radio Bemba. “The blood of our colleagues were not shed in vain. In fact, it is with their blood that we will continue our work, boost the radio for the betterment of the Triquis community,” he said.

Oaxacan women rose to international prominence in 2006 when they led the takeover of a TV station during the people’s uprising in Oaxaca City. What started as a women-only march on August 1, culminated in the peaceful seizing of the state-owned television station, Channel 9. For three months, they collectively ran the station and opened a forum of discussion on the airwaves previously inaccessible to the community. Their media revolution was only haltered when the Mexican government decided to attack their own station, destroying the antenna and effectively taking them off the air. Taking over the communications broadcasting system, including several radio stations, has been heralded as a symbol of the popular movement in Oaxaca.

The Triqui indigenous people of San Juan Copala in southern Oaxaca, saw their first radio station, La Voz que Rompe el Silencio, as a major victory of their struggle. When the community declared itself an autonomous region on January 21, 2007, it vowed to stay independent from any party affiliation or influence, creating even a Police of the Community (Policia Comunitaria) to replace government armed forces in the region. The radio was to serve the Triquis people to promote unity, overcome conflicts, and encourage communication among communities, including those that are not formally members of the autonomous region. The radio stressed from the beginning the importance of promoting diversity within the station with the participation of women and particularly, the youth.

Jorge Albino reported to Radio Bemba that the two murdered journalists were in fact focusing on the process of indigenous autonomy, including health and bilingual education. Fearing the state of impunity in the region, radio administrators have circumvented local authorities and requested a federal investigation into the murders.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
The Triquis Inaugurate Their New Autonomous Municipality, by Nancy Davies
http://www.narconews.com/Issue44/article2521.html

Radio Bemba
portal.radiobemba.org

Ventana a Mi Comunidad


source: http://boston.indymedia.org/feature/display/204239/index.php

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