The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today urged an investigation into the an armed attack that left Mexican crime reporter Adrián Silva Moreno and a former municipal police officer Misray López González dead on 14 November in the town of Tehuacán, in central Mexico.
“I am appalled by the murder of Adrián Silva Moreno and Misray López González,” the Director-General said. “It is essential that the perpetrators of this crime be brought to justice. Violence against journalists in Mexico has reached an intolerable level.
“I call for firm action to enable media workers in Mexico to carry out their professional duties which are essential to democracy and rule of law. The basic human right of freedom of expression must be defended, alongside press freedom, its corollary.”
Adrián Silva Moreno is reported to have been shot dead in his car while covering an investigation into the theft of gasoline from government-owned pipelines. His passenger, Misray López González, was killed as he tried to flee the reporter’s car.
Silva Moreno’s killing brings to seven the number of journalists and media workers murdered in Mexico over the past year. They are remembered in the dedicated webpage, UNESCO Condemns Killing of Journalists.
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…”