22 July 2011

Campaigns and Advocacy

IAPA urges Ecuadoreans to defend freedom of expression

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(IAPA/IFEX) - QUITO, Ecuador, July 19, 2011 - The president of the Inter American Press Association (IAPA), Gonzalo Marroquín, called on the citizens of Ecuador to take part in the defense of freedom of expression and the press due to "the deterioration that these fundamental human rights have suffered in recent years" as a result of a restrictive legal system.

At a press conference yesterday, at the end of a two-day IAPA mission in Quito, Marroquín, president of the Guatemala City, Guatemala, newspaper Siglo21, said, "The climate of accelerated deterioration" will be further intensified with the passage of a future Communication Law, a bill that he described as "disastrous and a gag" that would "serve to expand self-censorship far beyond the realm of the press and its work."

Marroquín and the other members of the IAPA delegation expressed concern at "the increasing concentration" of media in government hands, the ongoing harassment of Ecuador's independent press through excessive and disproportionate lawsuits by President Rafael Correa, and manipulation in the placement of official advertising to punish or reward media outlets depending on their editorial stance, among other issues.

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