By Isabela Fraga
Venezuelan journalists from private news outlets were not allowed to cover a presidential event on Monday, Aug. 6, reported El Universal.
According to journalist Ricardo Graffe, from Globovisión, press accreditation started at 6 a.m. that same day, but later on, the event removed the credentials from registered journalists.
Journalists were told that the event would be transmitted by the National System of Public Media, the only outlet that would have authorization for the coverage, reported the news site Noticias24. According to the 6º Poder website, the event was part of incumbent Hugo Chavez's presidential campaign and took place in the state of Carabobo, in northeast Venezuela, in a group of houses built by the Petrochemical Corporation of Venezuela.
Just two months before the Venezuelan elections, tensions have escalated between candidates and the press. Recently, a journalist from the TV station Venezoelana de Televisión reported an attack by presidential candidate supporters of opposition candidate Henrique Capriles. The TV station Globovisión also was fined $5.6 million for covering a prison conflict. The World Association of Newspapers and News Editors also warned that violence against journalists and censorship may undermine the press' role during the pre-election period.
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.