The International Press Association of Colombia (APIC) expresses its concerned about the departure from the country of Nicholas Casey, Andes bureau chief of The New York Times, and photographer Federico Rios.
APIC condemns and rejects the accusations made by Senators Maria Fernanda Cabal and Alvaro Uribe, and Representative Juan David Velez against the journalists, after the publication of their investigation “Colombian Army’s Kill Orders Put Civilians at Risk, Officers Say.”
Clashes between power and journalism are natural in any society, but we believe that in this moment of growing polarization in Colombia, the stigmatization of journalists because of their work not only endangers the lives of our colleagues Casey and Rios, but all journalists who, in carrying out their work, present the version of the different perspectives within a story.
APIC calls for reflection on the part of those who carry out these attacks, and calls on political parties and activists from all sectors to respect the exercise of journalism.
Given that public figures have greater responsibility in their statements for the impact they achieve, the APIC expects a rectification of the senators in question; and requests the head of the Public Ministry, Inspector General Fernando Carrillo, to speak out about the conduct of these officials against the work of the journalistic corps.
It is the responsibility of the Colombian government, led by President Ivan Duque, to provide all the necessary measures to guarantee effective freedom of the press, especially in times of political and social tension, as provided by the Inter-American Human Rights System.
The International Press Association of Colombia is an organization made up by approximately 80 journalists working for international media.