UNESCO chief calls for investigation into murder of Paraguayan radio broadcaster

21 February 2013

The head of the United Nations agency tasked with defending press freedom today called for an investigation into the murder of Marcelino Vázquez, the owner and manager of a radio station in Paraguay.

Mr. Vázquez, 54, was shot dead on 6 February as he was leaving work in the city of Pedro Juan Caballero near the Brazilian border. He was headed towards a nearby discotheque, which he also owned at the time of his killing.

Mr. Vázquez’s radio station, Radio Sin Fronteras (Radio without Borders) 98.5 FM, broadcasted music as well as news and opinion programmes about a wide range of subjects.

In a news release issued by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Director-General Irina Bokova condemned the killing and called for an investigation.

“It is essential that the culprits of this crime be brought to justice. Freedom of expression, recognized as a basic human right, depends on the ability of media managers and workers to work in conditions of reasonable safety,” she stated.

According to UNESCO, this is the first murder to target a Paraguayan media organization in recent years.

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