A fifth reporter has been killed since the beginning of the year on Monday, May 15 in Mexico. Mexican journalist Javier Valdez, a renowned narcotrafficist and freelancer for Agence France-Presse in the state of Sinaloa, was murdered in the north-western town of Culiacán. “This happened in front of Riodoce’s offices. (…) He was attacked with the gun, “said a judicial source.
Javier Valdez, 50, has been working for more than ten years for Agence France-Presse in Sinaloa, a fiefdom of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s cartel, currently incarcerated in the United States. This father was also a correspondent for the daily La Jornada and the weekly Riodoce. “He had spoken to his wife today, he told him not to prepare the meal, that he would bring back a chicken,” his brother Rafael said after the tragedy. “I asked him several times if he was afraid. He told me yes, that he was human. I asked him why he risked his life and he replied: ” It’s something I like, someone has to do, we have to fight to change things,” Rafael Valdez said.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto condemned on Twitter “this unworthy crime” and reiterated its commitment to “freedom of expression and the press, fundamental to (their) democracy”. “We are horrified by this tragedy and extend our condolences to Javier’s family and friends,” reacted Agence France-Presse’s director of information Michèle Léridon. “Being extremely courageous, Javier has been investigating for years the powerful drug cartels in Mexico without being unaware that he was doing so at the peril of his life,” she added. We ask the Mexican authorities to shed light on this cowardly assassination. “Of course, the activities carried out by Javier have an impact on the tracks of the investigation, Commented the state prosecutor of Sinaloa, Juan José Rios Estavillo. “We now especially want to ensure the security of the newspaper, the weekly, and especially of his family. “His last collaboration with Agence France-Presse was about ten days ago about the internal war currently underway in the Sinaloa cartel after the extradition of its powerful leader, Joaquin” El Chapo “Guzman. March was particularly bleak for reporters in Mexico, with three journalists killed and another seriously wounded. Faced with the lack of security, the daily newspaper Diario Norte, based in Ciudad Juárez (north), has stopped appearing. The year 2016 was marked by a record number of 11 executed journalists,
Confusion over the identity of the priest’s aggressor
The day in Mexico was also marked by the aggression of a priest in full mass in the cathedral of Mexico. The Mexican authorities tried on Monday evening to determine the nationality of the man who stabbed him and who presented himself first as a Frenchman, then as a “North American artist,” according to various sources. The aggressor is of “French nationality,” said the National Commission of Mexican security in a communiqué broadcast in the evening. The judge, however, said he would call himself “John Rock Schild” and described himself as a “North American artist”, adding that he would use his right to silence, according to a statement by the prosecutor. A source at the French authorities indicated that ‘
The man stabbed the priest Miguel Angel Machorro around 7 pm in this cathedral located in the historic center of the megalopolis. “The aggressor caught the priest by the neck and attempted to kill him. Thanks to God, Father Miguel Angel Machorro was able to free himself, but he was wounded near the lung with a sharp object, “the Catholic Church said in a statement. The priest was then quickly transferred by helicopter to a hospital in the capital, where he is “in a stable but delicate state”, according to the judicial authorities. Several Mexican national media first reported an aggressor of French nationality, but in a press conference, Mexican church lawyer Armando Martinez refused to confirm these assertions.