Impunity prevails in Mexico's drug war

Sep 19, 2013

The remains of a vehicle are cordoned off in a street in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Friday July 16, 2010.
The remains of a vehicle are cordoned off in a street in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Friday July 16, 2010.
Credit Associated Press

Covering crime and corruption in Mexico may be the most dangerous job in the world of journalism. On average, 10 journalists have been killed every year since 2006. And attacks on the media have increased since a new president took office nine months ago.

Not one of the killers is behind bars, and very few of the attackers and abductors have been arrested, let alone convicted.  Of course, the same impunity exists for drug cartel thugs and corrupt government officials who target non-journalists.

Fortunately, two recent actions give some reason to believe the situation might improve. First, the military arrested the leader of Los Zetas, a criminal organization that has become one of the dominant players in Mexico’s drug trade. And new legislation approved recently gives the federal attorney more power to investigate and prosecute crimes against journalists and human rights advocates.

To learn more about the plight of journalists in Mexico, Global Journalist spoke to a press freedom activist and two Mexican journalists.

Panelists:

Scott Griffen  is Press Freedom Adviser for Latin America and the Caribbean at the International Press Institute.

Javier Garza Ramos is the editorial director for the daily newspaper El Siglo de Torreon.

Sandra Rodriguez Nieto is an investigative reporter.