Fifteen years ago, killers of journalists in Latin America simply weren’t prosecuted. Since the Project Against Impunity began, prosecutors have won convictions of some, though not all, of those responsible for 59 of the 258 killings and presumed killings of journalists in Latin America through August 2010. Most of those punished, however, are hired guns, not the masterminds.
Governments now face consistent pressure from the IAPA to provide justice. But the advertising campaign meant to stir public outrage has lost its effectiveness, with only about 265 people a month writing protest letters.
Killings of journalists in Latin America have risen in recent years because more journalists are dying in Mexico at the hands of drug traffickers.
In Colombia, formerly the hardest-hit country, killings of journalists have dropped sharply, as have killings of Colombians in general, thanks to the get-tough policies of President lvaro Uribe, who just left office.
In Brazil, another violent country, killings of journalists have plummeted, and hired guns almost always go to prison now.
In Mexico, the government’s inability to arrest and try the killers of journalists part of an impunity problem across the board for all crimes has overwhelmed the IAPA’s efforts to bring justice there.
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