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ARCHIVES: Colombia

July 16, 2010

Progress made in investigations into murders of three Colombian journalists

The Colombian Attorney-General's Office has recently taken a number of decisions regarding the murders of journalists Jaime Rengifo Revero (2003), Jaime Garzón Forero (1999) and Guillermo Cano Isaza (1986), according to Fundación para la Libertad de Prensa (FLIP). A judge in the city of Barranquilla has charged two former members of the United Self Defence Group of Colombia (Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia, AUC) with Rengifo's murder. The two men, José Gregorio Álvarez Andrade and Jairo Alonso... MORE
July 9, 2010

US denies visa to Colombian journalist

The US government has denied a visa to a prominent Colombian journalist who specializes in conflict and human rights reporting to attend a prestigious fellowship at Harvard University, the Associated Press (AP) has reported. Hollman Morris, who produces an independent TV news programme called "Contravia," has been highly critical of ties between illegal far-right militias and allies of outgoing President Alvaro Uribe, Washington's closest ally in Latin America. The curator of the Nieman... MORE
July 1, 2010

Colombian intelligence official held in journalist’s murder

A former deputy director of the national Colombian intelligence agency has been ordered held for masterminding the 1999 murder of journalist Jaime Garzón. José Miguel Narváez is currently behind bars awaiting trial in a separate case. The attorney-general’s office issued the order on Tuesday after three former paramilitary leaders implicated Narváez in Garzón’s murder, the national daily El Tiempo reported. Former paramilitary leaders have already tied Narváez to the murder of Colombian... MORE
May 24, 2010

Investigation stalls in Colombian journalist’s murder

Two months after the murder of Colombian journalist Clodomiro Castilla Ospino, the investigation is stalled and the victim’s daughter has been forced to flee her hometown of Montería after being followed and harassed, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). Castilla, editor and publisher of the local news magazine El Pulso del Tiempo , was shot by two unidentified assailants on a motorcycle outside his house on March 19 in the city of Montería, northern Colombia. Colombian... MORE
February 23, 2010

Colombia: Government implicated in phone-tapping as pressure on media continues

The Colombian attorney-general’s office Monday directly implicated four senior intelligence officials and the secretary-general of the president’s office, Bernardo Moreno, in the phone-tapping of journalists and other prominent government critics, a scandal that was first exposed in early 2009. This occurred during the trial of Jorge Noguera, the former head of the intelligence agency known as the Administrative Department of Security (DAS), who is accused of homicide and “links to... MORE
February 17, 2010

Uribe to CPJ, FLIP: 'Illegal spies are enemies of Colombia'

Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Vélez said on Tuesday that those who illegally spy on the press are “enemies of his government” during a meeting with a delegation from the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and the Foundation for Freedom of the Press (FLIP). Uribe issued the statement at the urging of the CPJ and FLIP delegation, which met with the president and top government officials including Vice President Francisco Santos; Minister of Interior Fabio Valencia Cossio; Felipe Muñoz, the... MORE
February 9, 2010

Little progress seen in Colombia: Journalists still in danger

The Day of the Journalist that Colombia celebrates Tuesday will inevitably be overshadowed by the fact that press freedom is making no progress. Despite government boasts about “successful” measures for protecting the media, endangered journalists insist that they are not any safer and this will not change until the president takes a clear position, according to Reporters sans Frontières (RSF). Paradoxically, the government has become one of the biggest threats to the media, which continue to... MORE
December 29, 2009

Colombia: Manual teaches intelligence agency employees how to spy on problem journalists

The weekly Semana has just revealed the existence of an instruction manual for employees of the Administrative Department of Security (DAS), Colombia’s leading intelligence agency, that explains how they should spy on, threaten, intimidate and discredit NGOs, judges and journalists who create problems for the government. The revelation is the latest in a series of scandals implicating the DAS, coming after phone tapping revelations in February, the discovery in May of a list of media and... MORE
December 17, 2009

TV host shot dead in western Colombia

An unidentified gunman shot and killed Colombian journalist Hárold Humberto Rivas Quevedo in the western Valle del Cauca province on the night of December 15, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has reported. CPJ Thursday called on Colombian authorities to investigate the killing and do everything in their power to bring all those responsible to justice. Rivas, 49, host of the political commentary show “Comuna Libre” on local TV station CNC Bugavisión and sports... MORE
October 30, 2009

Colombia: Protection programme for journalists also used for "close-quarters spying"

Colombian journalist Claudia Julieta Duque, who is under an interior ministry protection programme for journalists, is being harassed and intimidated by the intelligence services, who obtained information about her from her alleged protectors, according to Reporters sans Frontières (RSF). Duque, of Radio Nizkor, is about to present a file to the authorities exposing the persecution she has suffered since 2001 at the hands of the Department of Administrative Security Department (DAS). Some... MORE