Sep 3, 2011

MEXICO: Murders of Reporters Heighten Despair and Shock

This article goes beyond the facts of the murder of two women journalists to look at "The consequences of the violence (that) can be devastating for communities, because fear and despair cause a breakdown of the social fabric." "The logic of fear is a very powerful form of domination and social control, because it aggravates the loss of individual and social identity and causes paralysis, isolation and segregation," in the words of Verónica Martínez, who works at the Institute for Legal Research of the National Autonomous University of Mexico and is also a member of the board at the International Organisation for Victim Assistance  (IOVA)

IPS ""And how do you escape this anxiety, this sensation that nothing we do does any good?" a Mexican journalist wrote on her Facebook page after the murder of two of her colleagues in Mexico City.

The brutal murders of Marcela Yarce, 48, and Rocío González, 48, rocked Mexico when their bodies were found Thursday. Yarce was one of the founders of Contralínea, a political news magazine that regularly reports on government corruption, which has suffered constant harassment in recent years. The two women were the first female journalists killed in the capital since the government of conservative President Felipe Calderón declared "war" on the drug trade and put the army on the streets shortly after taking office in December 2006.

"Mexican journalists are in mourning, not only because of these killings, but because of all of the murders committed against us," the "Los Queremos Vivos" (We Want Them Alive) collective that organises protests against attacks on journalists, wrote in an open letter to Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard."

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