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Honduras: Opposition Journalist Assassinated

Those murdered this weekend in Honduras were associated with former presidential candidate Xiomara Castro de Zelaya, above. (photo via official Facebook page)

Those murdered this weekend in Honduras were both associated with former presidential candidate Xiomara Castro de Zelaya, above. (photo via official Facebook page)

A journalist was assassinated in his home this weekend in the town of Danlí in eastern Honduras on Saturday. Juan Carlos Argeñal, a 43-year-old correspondent for Radio Globo, was a sympathiser of Partido Libre, the left wing political party led by former presidential candidate Xiomara Castro. His brother Mario was also a local Libre party organiser.

Police say three armed and hooded men entered Argeñal’s home and shot him twice in the head.

The director of Radio Globo, David Romero, has stated that Argeñal had reported receiving a series of death threats after publishing a number of acts of corruption committed in a local hospital. While authorities believe his murder was commissioned and then carried out by hitmen, it is not clear whether it was in retaliation for his revelation of corruption, his support of the Libre party, or both.

Also on Saturday, in the early hours of the morning, Libre politician Graciela Lozano was shot and killed in what is believed to have been an armed robbery. Lozano was a recent mayoral candidate for the eastern municipality of Brus Laguna, where she finished in third place. Authorities are still investigating if the murder was politically motivated.

According to a United Nations report published last May, Honduras has the world’s highest number of journalists assassinated per capita. In 2012 alone, 20 journalists were killed. The same report put Honduras’ per capita murder rate at 92 people out of every 100,000, also the highest in the world.

Political killings in Honduras have particularly spiked in the country’s recent electoral cycle. A report in November from the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH), put the number of politically related murders in the past 18 months at 39, most of the victims being linked to Castro’s oppositional Libre party.

Posted in Current Affairs, News From Latin America, News Round Ups, Round Ups Latin AmericaComments (0)

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