Bolivian reporter receives death threats through text messages

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  • January 12, 2011

By Maira Magro

Journalist Carlos Torres, correspondent for Panamerican radio in the city of Sucre, in the south of Bolivia, received anonymous death threats via text message on his cell phone, reported the National Press Association (ANP).

Torres, who also works as general secretary for the Federal Syndicate of Press Workers of Chuquisaca, the region where Sucre is located, linked the threat to his participation in a campaign to annul two articles of the new anti-racism law, that the media and press organizations believe violate freedom of expression.

The message, that called the journalist a "liar" and threatened to shoot him, was sent Jan. 3, according to IFEX. Torres reported the incident to the police, who indicated they would begin an investigation if he receives new threats.

Torres since has received two more death threats sent anonymously to his cell phone, most likely from an Internet cafe, reported the National Press Association.

The anti-racism law was approved in October and the regulations for the law were finalized Jan. 5. Journalist organizations and some media have criticized the law, while other freedom of the press groups think that the final text of the law resolved any ambiguities that initially worried the press.

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.