In less than five months, 49 attacks against journalists reported in Peru

A new report from the Office of Journalist Human Rights of the National Journalists Association of Peru (ANP in Spanish) shows 49 attacks against journalists recorded in Peru during the first months of 2012. Most assaults were done by public officials (17), followed by civilians (16), non-identified attackers (11), news outlet owners/managers (4), and police/military (1). Among the assaulted journalists, 12 of them were women, according to the report.

The report highlighted many concerning cases. In addition to several assaults on journalists, the ANP also mentioned the blocking of the Perú21 newspaper's website during a meeting of Congress in late April.

The ANP also criticized the possible approval of a gag law which would be detrimental to freedom of expression and the practice of journalism “by restricting publication of illegally intercepted communications,” said the newspaper La República.

The March nullification of journalist Teobaldo Melendez Fachin's three-year prison sentence for defaming a mayor was the only positive aspect of ANP's report.