18, May 2018 | CJP Team
On Tuesday, May 15, Juan Carlos Huerta, a television host and director of a radio station, was shot dead in Mexico’s Tabasco state, the Guardian reported. Arturo Núñez, the state governor, said the murder was not a robbery, and seemed to be linked to Huerta’s work. “They apparently went to execute him,” he said. Huerta’s murder coincided with the first anniversary of the killing of Javier Valdez, a well-known and popular journalist in the Sinaloa state. Valdez, who was dragged from his car and shot 12 times on May 15, 2017, had started newsweekly, called Ríodoce. The publication covered corruption and crime in Sinaloa, where violence has been rife following the extradition of the drug lord Joaquín ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán, as drug cartels grapple for power. Huerta was reportedly the tenth journalist to have been killed since Valdez’s murder. According to Jan-Albert Hootsen, the Mexico representative for the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), “Impunity continues to incentivise the killers”. According to CPJ, Mexico has seen the murders of four reporters in 2018, with two of these confirmed to have been linked to the victims’ work. Mexico placed at 147, just one place above Russia, in 2018’s annual Reporters Without Borders (RSF) World Press Freedom Index. The country saw 12 journalists being killed in 2017.