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  • A protester wears a scarf over his mouth, symbolizing the state

    A protester wears a scarf over his mouth, symbolizing the state's censorship of the media, while holding a sign with the word "journalist." | Photo: EFE

Published 24 February 2019

The situation takes place at a critical time for media after journalists registered some 59 assaults last year.

Honduran’s censorship on media is a violation of freedom of the press and citizens’ right to information, an army journalists said during a protest Saturday.

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Organizations and media personnel took to the streets, demanding government officials lift the media censor against national publications and freelance journalism.

The situation takes place at a critical time for media after journalists registered some 59 assaults last year.

According to the Committee for Free Expression in Honduras , the authorities use federal communication policies to stifle reports of military repression and persecution of journalists.

One reporter, Selvin Lopez Anariba, was forced to leave the country due to persistent death threats. A strong critic of the state and the Juan Hernandez administration, Lopez and his family were targeted with extortion as well as threats of violence and death. The journalist was intercepted while leaving a workshop in La Lima by a pair of strangers mounted on a motorcycle.

"My life, and most importantly, the lives of my wife and daughter were put in jeopardy by a group that extorts money from those who daily try to get ahead by working hard," the radio journalist told the magazine HonduSport Ilustrada.

Days later, Lopez returned to his car to find a note and the windshield shattered by a bullet.

“I had a note and a bullet in the windshield of my vehicle where they told me that if I did not comply with what they had requested, one of those bullets would be for my wife and one for my daughter. Unfortunately that note fortified our decision to leave the country. I can not give what I do not have,” he said.

Lopez and his wife, who also worked as a journalist in San Pedro Sula, reported the threats to local authorities and human rights organizations without avail.

"That is why we are no longer in Honduras, we leave everything, our jobs and my daughter's university, it is painful, terrible and we have to be very strong to be able to bear it, but unfortunately that is the reality of our Honduras."


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