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Border & Immigration

Investigation of Mexican journalist killings raises more questions

Journalists and supporters hold signs as they protest the murders of their colleagues Lourdes Maldonado and Margarito Martinez in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. The sign says, "Journalism at risk. Don't kill the truth."
Matt Bowler
Journalists and supporters hold signs as they protest the murders of their colleagues Lourdes Maldonado and Margarito Martinez in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. The sign says, "Journalism at risk. Don't kill the truth."

Two more journalists have been killed in Mexico this week, bringing the grim total of reporter deaths this year to 11.

The latest murders were of two women from an online news site in the state of Veracruz. News of their deaths came the same day as a rally held in Mexico City to commemorate the death of a reporter in Sinaloa just last week.

Drug cartels and their hitmen are often blamed for the murders of Mexican journalists. Mexican prosecutors have named associates of the old Arellano-Felix drug cartel in the murders of two Tijuana journalists earlier this year. But Watchdog reporter Wendy Fry wrote in a story for The San Diego Union-Tribune that critics have expressed doubts about the validity of those claims.

Fry said there’s evidence that the killing of journalist Margarito Martinez in Tijuana last January may be linked to his reporting on drug cartels. But there is no evidence that journalist and broadcaster Lourdes Maldonado, also killed in January, was working on similar investigations. She also points out the lack of transparency in the proceedings against Maldonado’s alleged killers.

When asked about her own safety reporting in Tijuana, Fry said she has always felt safe before, but there is so much chaos now in the Mexican underworld that she feels anything can happen.