Ana Arana. July 31, 2012
Another attack targeting the Mexican media was carried out on 29 July. The Monterrey-based offices of the regional daily El Norte, a newspaper owned by the Reforma publishing group, were set on fire by armed men late on Sunday. It was the third attack on one of the daily’s offices in the past month. The office attacked Sunday covers the weddings and community events of the elite living in the upper-class enclave of Monterrey’s San Pedro Garza Garcia.
The newspaper claims that it has suffered six similar attacks since 2010, and that all have been ignored by local authorities. The daily’s security camera footage shows three men escaping in a car, escorted by three vehicles. Local police on patrol drove past the newspaper’s offices only moments after the men fled the scene, but did not pursue them.
The attack on the press occured in the northern state of Nuevo Leon, in a region where warring Gulf and Zetas drug cartels have been battling for territorial control. Both criminal organisations are also known for their harsh treatment of the media, according to Fundación MEPI’s 2010 report on self-censorship.
Mexico is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for the media. Firebombings, fires, and grenade attacks against both government and privately owned institutions are common in Nuevo Leon, where more than 30 per cent of grenade attacks in the country have taken place since 2005.
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