Colombian journalist injured after explosive attack near community radio

  • By
  • August 8, 2012

By Liliana Honorato

On the night of Friday, Aug. 3, a Colombian journalist was injured after an attack with explosives near the community radio station where she worked in Saravena, a town in Arauca, on the Venezuelan border, reported the news agency EFE, and the newspaper El Tiempo. According to Caracol radio, those responsible for the attack are allegedly members of the National Liberation Army (ELN in Spanish), and the attack had targeted police.

Radio presenter Paola Osorio, whose arms were injured, works for the community broadcaster Sarare Estéreo, the same radio station where worked the journalist and engineer who were kidnapped by ELN members on July 24, reported the Freedom and Press Foundation (FLIP in Spanish). The director of the radio station said that threats against the station are frequent, since it reports about guerrilla attacks, and acts as the voice of the community, added FLIP.

Community radio stations are the most affected among the attacks against the Colombian press, reported the news site lainformacion.com, referring to the 2012 report from the Colombian Federation of Journalists (FECOLPER in Spanish), published on Aug. 4. According to FECOLPER, this is the fifth attack this year "in which a Colombian community radio station suffered damages" because of the armed conflict.

In Colombia, the majority of threats against journalists usually come from guerrillas. At the beginning of July, the ELN guerrillas spread flyers against the journalistic work of the radio stations Caracol and RCN. The threats coming from paramilitary groups also are a serious problem for Colombian journalists.

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.