Bolivia enacts anti-racism law, reporters try to undo two controversial measures

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  • October 11, 2010

By Maira Magro

Journalists and news media launched a new wave of protests after a controversial anti-racism law was sanctioned Friday, Oct. 8, with the approval of Congress and the signature of President Evo Morales. The law takes effect in January 2011.

The press has argued that the law violates freedom of expression and imposes censorship by punishing journalists and news media that report ideas considered discriminatory or racist.

Press organizations have begun to campaign for a “Law in defense of rights and freedom of expression," which will eliminate two articles of the new anti-racism law: one that will suspend the license of media that publish racist and discriminatory ideas, and another that establishes punishment for journalists. Journalists have also launched a petition drive to seek a referendum over the antiracism law.

The new protests by media workers include a hunger strike.

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.