28.04.2011 -

Director-General deplores death of Bolivian news agency director David Niño de Guzmán

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, deplored the death of Bolivian news agency director David Niño de Guzmán and called for an investigation into his death.

"I urge the Bolivian authorities to thoroughly investigate the brutal death of David Niño de Guzmán," the Director-General said. "Bringing to light the circumstances, and punishing those responsible, sends an important signal that freedom of expression is an inviolable right, and that the existence of a diverse and independent media is vital for informed public debate."

 

Niño de Guzmán, 42, joined Agencia de Noticias Fides as a reporter in 2006 and became news director in March 2010.

 

The journalist was found dead on 21 April in La Paz's Restamanis neighbourhood, two days after he had been reported missing. He was killed by an explosive device, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to "further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations." To realize this the Organization is requested to "collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image..."




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