December 15, 2018

Press Freedom

Mexico

Mexico December 12, 2012

H.E. Enrique Pena Nieto
President
Residencia Official de los Pinos
Col. San Miguel Chapultepec
1850 Mexico, D.F., C.P. 11850
Government of Mexico
Fax: (011 52 5) 515 5729

Your Excellency:

The Overseas Press Club of America (OPC) urges you to start your term as president of Mexico by affirming to the world that Mexico intends to remove itself from the list of countries that are the most dangerous places for a journalist to work, countries where murderers live unpunished.  The International Press Institute (IPI) reports that Mexico ranks third in the world behind Syria and Somalia as the deadliest places for a journalist to report the news.  We hope you agree that this is not a list your great democratic nation wishes to lead.

One case where you can signal a new era for Mexico is the investigation of the death of Regina Martínez Pérez, a respected correspondent for Proceso.  Of the seven journalists killed in Mexico this year, she is one of five who died in the state of Veracruz.  The OPC Freedom of the Press Committee urges you to order the Federal special prosecutor for crimes against journalists to take over the investigation of the Martinez Perez murder.  We believe that this homicide took place as a result of her work reporting on politics and corruption in Veracruz.

As you may be aware, Mr. President, the Mexican Constitution was reformed in June.  Section 21 was added to Article 73 to make the killing of a journalist a federal crime.  Once secondary laws proposed in November take effect, it will empower your Federal government to take control of any such investigation that may have been compromised local authorities.

A November 2 report by the New York-based international press freedom organization, Committee to Protect Journalists, raised profound questions about this case.  Federal officials have told CPJ that Jorge Hernández Silva, the man arrested for Martínez Perez’s death, retracted a confession given to state authorities and that Hernández said he was coerced through torture and by threats against his mother. This adds to doubts caused by state authorities who chose theft as the motive for assailants who strangled Martínez Perez to death in her home.  Her cell phones were stolen while more valuable items were ignored.

We urge you to take action in this case, Your Excellency, using these secondary laws supporting Section 21 to order Federal prosecutors and investigators to enter the Martinez Perez case, applying the full powers of your presidency.

You can make a difference, Your Excellency, by acting forcibly and promptly. Our members look forward to reporting the news that you have taken action.

Respectfully yours,
Susan Kille
John Martin
Freedom of the Press Committee

cc

Javier Duarte de Ochoa
Governor of Veracruz
Av. Enríquez s/n. Col. Centro, CP 91000, Xalapa, Veracruz
Mexico

Eduardo Medina-Mora Icaza
Attorney General
Avenida Paseo de la Reforma, Nos. 211-213
Mexico, DF, C.P. 06500
Mexico

Senate of the Republic
Avenida Paseo de la Reforma 135
Col. Tabacalera
Mexico D.F., C.P. 06030
Mexico
Attention: Sen. Angelica De la Pena Gomez, Presidenta de la Comision de Derechos Humanos

Senate of the Republic
Avenida Paseo de la Reforma 135
Col. Tabacalera
Mexico D.F., C.P. 06030
Mexico
Attention: Sen. Gilberto Gil Zuarth, President de la Comision de Justica

Senate of the Republic
Avenida Paseo de la Reforma 135
Col. Tabacalera
Mexico D.F., C.P. 06030
Mexico
Attention: Sen. Maria Cristina Diaz Salazar, Presidenta de la Comision de Gobernacion

The Chamber of Deputies: Ave. Congreso de la Union 66
Col. El Parque
Mexico D.F., C.P. 15969
Mexico
Attention: Dip. Miriam Cardenas Cantu, Presidenta de la Comision de Derechos Humanos

The Chamber of Deputies: Ave. Congreso de la Union 66
Col. El Parque
Mexico D.F., C.P. 15969
Mexico
Attention: Dip. Claudio Delgadillo Gonzalez, Presidenta de la Comision de Justica

The Chamber of Deputies: Ave. Congreso de la Union 66
Col. El Parque
Mexico D.F., C.P. 15969
Mexico
Attention: Dip. Rafael Alejandro Moreno Cardenas, Presidente de la Comision de Governacion

Olga María del Carmen Sánchez
Ministra
Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación
Pino Súarez, No. 2
Colonia Centro, México, DF
México

Genaro David Góngora Pimentel
Ministro Presidente
Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación
Pino Súarez, No. 2
Colonia Centro, México, DF
México

Juan Francisco Ealy Ortiz
El Universal of Mexico City
Bucareli N° 8, Col. Centro Delegación
Cuauhtémoc, C.P. 06040
México

U.S. Postal Service:
Maria Otero
Under Secretary of State for Democracy
and Global Affairs
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street, NW
Washington, DC 20520
Fax:

H.E. Arturo Sarukhan Casamitjana
Ambassador of Mexico to the U.S.A.
Embassy of Mexico
1911 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20006?
Fax (202) 728.1698

Ambassador Claude Heller
Permanent Representative
Permanent Mission of Mexico
to the United Nations
2 United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017
Fax: (212) 688.8862

H.E. Anthony Wayne
U.S. Ambassador to Mexico
Embassy of the United States of America
P.O. Box 9000
Brownsville, TX 78520
Fax: (011.52.55) 50.80.20.05