29 December 2003


Journalist murdered

Incident details

Ivannia Mora Rodríguez



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(IAPA/IFEX) - The following is a 26 December 2003 IAPA press release:

IAPA urges Costa Rican authorities to investigate murder of journalist

MIAMI, Florida (December 26, 2003)-The Inter American Press Association (IAPA) today expressed outrage at the murder of a journalist in Costa Rica and called on the authorities there to immediately begin an investigation and to not permit an earlier murder in the Central American country to continue to go unpunished.

Ivannia Mora Rodríguez, 33, was mortally wounded on the evening of December 23 as she was driving her car on a downtown San José street. Two assailants on a motorcycle shot her at close range and fled. She died shortly afterwards on the way to hospital. A colleague of hers who was a passenger in her car at the time, reporter Henry Bastos, escaped unhurt and told police that there was no attempt at robbery. It is therefore believed that Mora may have been killed because of her work as a reporter.

"We roundly condemn this new murder in Costa Rica," said Rafael Molina, chairman of the IAPA's Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information. Molina, editor of the Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, news magazine Ahora, was referring to an earlier murder in that country - that of Parmenio Medina on July 7, 2001 - in which the IAPA has been calling for identification and prosecution of the perpetrators.

Molina welcomed the fact that the Costa Rican authorities immediately began to investigate the latest murder. Members of Costa Rica's Judicial Investigation Agency arrested a man on Thursday and are now looking into threats that Mora had received recently but had not reported to the police.

Mora was a graduate of the University of Costa Rica and specialized in economic reporting. She wrote for a number of publications in her country and in recent weeks had been working on a relaunch of the magazine Summa, published by a credit card company.

The IAPA is waging a campaign in numerous publications throughout the Americas to raise public awareness regarding impunity surrounding crimes against journalists. One of its recently published ads calls on readers to urge the Costa Rican authorities to bring those responsible for Medina's murder to justice. For details, visit the Web site www.impunidad.com.


Inter American Press Association
"Jules Dubois Building"
1801 SW 3rd Ave.
Miami, FL 33129
Fax:+1 305 635 2272
Costa Rica

IFEX members working in this country 1

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