Journalist Ricardo Avila died on May 29 in Honduras, days after he was shot. It is the fourth journalist killed so far this year, and the third 97 since 2001. The Central American country is considered one of the toughest for freedom of expression and its reporters criticize impunity for the murders.
Journalist Ricardo Avila is the fourth reporter to be killed in Honduras so far this year. According to C-Liber Freedom of Expression Committee, Avila was a journalist and cameraman for the Metro TV and radio channel in Choluteca, 85 kilometers south of the capital, Tegucigalpa.
‘Too much panic’
At first, Avila’s murder was thought to be related to the assault, but when his belongings were found at the crime scene, this account was dismissed and everything indicates that he was attacked because of his journalistic work.
Ricardo was a promising young journalist, who was doing social media work and was a photographer for a well-known channel in the South. He was leaving work, but someone intercepted him and shot him in the head. The seriously injured young man was taken to the capital, where he died. There is an official version, which the authorities have stated that they are very close to solving the case. There are no other details, but there is a lot of panic throughout the union,” notes the president of the Honduran Journalists Association, Osman Reyes.
“The rate of impunity is very high”
Reyes also points to the troubling threats journalists face in the Central American country, where 97 have been murdered since 2001.
“Like the rest of the population, journalists are exposed to high levels of insecurity. We have, in addition to deaths, in addition to intimidation, a very high rate of impunity, because the crimes are simply not investigated. It is difficult at this time to determine who killed journalists and who or Who is behind it, and although it is requested, it is rarely investigated. It is the absence of truth that complicates us further. He asserts that the causes of death for people in Honduras are not really known.”
According to Reporters Without Borders, journalism in Honduras has experienced a slow decline for more than a decade, after the 2009 coup. The country remains one of the deadliest for journalism in the Americas, ranking 165th out of 180 countries assessed in freedom of expression. index.