UNESCO chief speaks out against murder of Brazilian crime reporter

26 October 2010

The head of the United Nations agency tasked with upholding pres freedom today condemned the killing of a respected Brazilian crime reporter who exposed vote rigging, drug trafficking and other illegal activities, calling on authorities to fully investigate his murder.

Francisco Gomes de Medeiros, 46, was killed on 18 October around 9 p.m. outside his home in the Paraíba neighbourhood of Caicó, in the state of Rio Grande de Norte. He was shot five times by one of two men on a motorcycle, and died shortly after arriving at the hospital.

Known as F. Gomes, he headed the news division of Radio Caicó FM, where he hosted the daily programme Comando Geral, or ‘General Command.’

“He was killed because he was carrying out his duty as a journalist to report on crime,” said Irina Bokova, Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

“He died for defending the basic right of freedom of expression, a cornerstone of democratic society.”

According to the International Press Institute, a non-governmental organization, 18 journalists have been killed in Brazil because of their work in the past decade.

 

♦ Receive daily updates directly in your inbox - Subscribe here to a topic.
♦ Download the UN News app for your iOS or Android devices.

News Tracker: Past Stories on This Issue

UN condemns murder of journalists in Brazil, Colombia and Turkey

The United Nations agency entrusted with defending media freedom today deplored the murder of journalists in Brazil, Colombia and Turkey over the past 10 days, calling on the authorities to take urgent action against such crimes, which constitute a serious threat to democracy.