The Director-General of UNESCO today denounced the killing of Colombian radio personality Alberto Lázaro del Valle in the city of Cali on 10 May
“I am appalled by the killing of Alberto Lázaro del Valle and trust that the Colombian authorities will be successful in their efforts to find and try those responsible for this crime. This is essential both because freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and because press freedom is an important component of democracy and rule of law.”
Alberto Lázaro del Valle is reported to have been approached by two unidentified people and shot as he was leaving the offices of Planeta, the youth radio station he directed. He died in a nearby clinic soon after he was attacked.
The journalist was also the host of a programme on that station and a veteran broadcaster who had worked in numerous radio stations in Cali over 30 years. He is the second journalist to be killed in Colombia over the last 12 months (see UNESCO Condemns the Killing of Journalists.
Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray(at)unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12
UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”