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Another Journalist Found Murdered in Veracruz

Another Journalist Found Murdered in Veracruz

Journalists have one of the most challenging and dangerous jobs in the world. They are often marked out as prime targets in political and social wars, especially when they report on controversial issues. In Honduras, two human rights reporters were found murdered after they had disappeared for a number of days. It is clear they were targeted for the type of work they conducted.

Mexico has also seen a rise in the number of journalists who have been kidnapped and killed in recent months. Al Jazeera reports that at least seven journalists or reporters have been murdered in the state of Veracruz in the last 18 months.

This week, another journalist has succumbed to violence. Manuel Baez Chino, a crime reporter in the state of Veracruz, was found dead on a city street this Thursday. The Associated Press reports that Baez Chino was kidnapped as he left work late on Wednesday. When his body was found the next day, it was found with a note that reportedly read, “This is what happens to those who betray us and be clever, Sincerely the Zetas.”

Baez Chino’s death is significant. He was one of the few journalists in Veracruz still fearless enough to continue writing about the crime scene in the area. He wrote for the national edition of Milenio and continued to work in the face of climbing journalist deaths. In early May, four bodies were found in the town of Boca del Rio in Veracruz. The victims were all involved in journalism and showed signs of having been tortured and mutilated, Al Jazeera reports. In 2011, two more journalists were shot, and even the wife and child of one of the reporters were murdered.

More recently, another journalist and her son went missing this past week in the state of Coahuila. Officials are concerned about her whereabouts and have called for an official investigation into her disappearance. Veracruz has significant drug cartel activity. The Zetas and New Generation are two warring cartels which are extremely active in the area. Officials in Veracruz were forced to fire 800 police officers in recent years because of Zeta corruption in the ranks.

It is reported that 81 media workers have been killed between 2000 and 2012 in the current drug wars. Journalists are not the only victims in this bloody battle. Last month, 49 headless bodies were found dumped by the side of the road in Monterrey. The victims appeared to be part of a Zeta ploy to dominate the region.

Officials claim they are cracking down on the activities of these groups. The Mexican military claims to have captured the Zetas chief of production, Gregorio Villanueva Salas this week. The capture may not prove successful in protecting hardworking journalists who face daily threats of capture and murder.

Murders of both individual reporters and citizens are often considered as ploys used by rival cartels. By blaming a massacre or kidnapping on a rival group, such as the Zetas, other cartels force the police to pursue investigations into the activities of the enemy cartel, thereby freeing up territory that was threatened by domination of stronger cartels such as New Generation and Zetas.

Related Stories:

Mexicans Protest Media Bias in Presidential Election (Video)

Mexican Students Demand Change

Honduras Remains a Hostile Environment for Journalists

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Photo Credit: Alejandro Linares Garcia

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14 comments

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10:44AM PDT on Jun 26, 2012

Such crime rate increasing consistently In a situation like this, we need an immediate help from somebody who can really save innocent people that are unfortunately affected with such violence. Here's what I am using even before and until now. It's called safetrec. It's an app that my mom and dad use to install with my iPhone, and I was really glad that I have it on my phone. Just as I remember I was driving my way home and have encountered a shop robbed by armed men with their guns. I pressed the panic button and get an immediate help from 911 with the complete location of the crime scene with the help of the GPS. Cops arrived just on the right timing and summoned 'em all. I went home with a very rewarding feeling that I was a hero for the day! here's more of their information: http://safetrec.com/

3:43AM PDT on Jun 18, 2012

Thanks

3:58PM PDT on Jun 17, 2012

Scary and very sad.

6:50AM PDT on Jun 17, 2012

How about these guys just stay behind their computers in their safe little offices and make stuff up like the rest of the media? They are unarmed, untrained, and need to stop running into places where they are not properly prepared. I cringe every time I hear about one needing to be rescued and putting even more of our troops in danger.

1:09AM PDT on Jun 17, 2012

So sad....''RIP Manuel Baez Chino''....you gave your life so others would know

He was a very brave man, condolence to all his family

11:05AM PDT on Jun 16, 2012

So sad....''RIP Manuel Baez Chino''....you gave your life so others would know what was going on in this world. Warning people of all the dangers around them. Hopefully, these low-life's will be caught and punished for this and other HORRIBLE crimes!!!!

9:56AM PDT on Jun 16, 2012

This is a thankless job and nobody understands how dangerous it really is I know this is happening in Mexico but it will start happening in the USA if Obama gets back in because he hates the truth to come out about him and sadly there is not a thing we can do about it because after all he is the President and everyone has to bow and scrape to him.

3:06AM PDT on Jun 16, 2012

These cowards, the Zetas, need to be ejected from Mexico. They hold villages, towns, cities and states in their thrall because they are psychopaths, callous to anything but their own desires for power and money. The beautiful people of Mexico have been kidnapped and the ransome is allowing these cretins to have their way unopposed. Shame! Shame! Shame!

8:31PM PDT on Jun 15, 2012

thanks

8:22PM PDT on Jun 15, 2012

Journalists are just as important as troops - yet they have no way to defend themselves and they have to gather their intelligence themselves.

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