Nobel-winner Vargas Llosa champions role of free press in Latin America

Peruvian writer and journalist Mario Vargas Llosa, the 2010 Nobel Laureate in Literature, defended the importance of “free journalism” and stressed the role of the Latin American press in helping diminish the “horrors of the authoritarian past” and supporting the consolidation of democracy, AFP and El Nuevo Diario report.

“I am aware of the fundamental importance of free journalism for a society to be free, to denounce the errors and horrors that often form part of the social experience, and of the heroic, risky, often tragic task that so many Latin American journalists have undertaken in our time, victims of censorship, repression, drug trafficking, crime,” the writer said, at a closed event in Punta del Este, Uruguay.

After the conference, the Uruguayan Press Circle awarded him the 2011 José Enrique Rodó prize.

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.