IAPA urges IACHR to take up case of unpunished murder of journalist

MIAMI, Florida (April 17, 2003)—On the fifth anniversary of the murder of
Colombian journalist Nelson Carvajal Carvajal, the Inter American Press Association
(IAPA) repeated a call to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR)
to take up the case, on the basis that the crime remains unpunished despite every
legal recourse having been resorted to in his country.

The Carvajal case was initially submitted to the IACHR on June 21, 2002. Based
on new evidence that has emerged concerning irregularities in the official investigation
and in the legal process – among them delays due to four public prosecutors
becoming successively involved, threats to witnesses and relatives of the victim,
and the fact that other lines of inquiry were not pursued – the IAPA reiterated
its request for IACHR intervention, for the case to be dealt with under the
inter-American justice system, given the shortcomings in the process in the
country of origin.

Carvajal was killed on April 16, 1998, in Pitalito, in the southwestern Colombian
province of Huila, where he was editor of the news segment of on-air magazines
“Mirador de la Semana” (Window on the Week), “Amanecer en
el Campo” (Dawn in the Countryside) and “Tribuna Médica”
(Medical Tribune), broadcast by Emisora Radio Sur radio station. A hired gunman
shot him seven times. It is believed he was killed for his allegations of political
corruption in Pitalito.

For more information on the case, which was investigated by the IAPA’s
Rapid Response Unit, visit the Web site www.impunidad.com

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