Police interrogate Paraguay journalists investigating corruption in Bolivia

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  • December 30, 2010

By Maira Magro

The Paraguayan newspaper ABC Color reports that two of its journalists were interrogated and had their documents photocopied by police in Tarija, the largest city in the Bolivian state of the same name that borders Paraguay and Argentina. The reporters were in Bolivia to investigate the case against the governor of Tarija, Mario Cossío, who fled to Paraguay after being removed from office on corruption charges, EFE explains.

The journalists Roque González and Eduardo Quintana said that the police surrounded their hotel and asked them who they had interviewed, their reasons for visiting a local prison, and what material they had sent to Asunción, where ABC Color’s officers are located. Paraguay is currently considering whether to grant Cossío’s request for political asylum in the country. In a recent interview with ABC Color, the ex-governor accused Bolivian President Evo Morales of being a “dictator” on a “campaign to eliminate all opposition.”

According to the reporters, their documents were initially confiscated by the police, but after being photocopied they were returned with an apology and word that everything was in “good standing.” However, González and Quintana said that their hotel has remained under police surveillance since the interrogation.

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.