Mexican photojournalist shot dead outside Tijuana’s home after second journalist murder in 2022
A photojournalist was shot dead on Monday in Mexico’s crime-ridden city of Tijuana, which borders the United States, authorities said – the latest murder in one of the world’s deadliest countries for reporters.
Margarito Martinez, 49, was attacked with a firearm and his body was found near his home, the security secretariat in the northwestern state of Baja California said in a statement.
Martinez, who specializes in news related to the police, had a gunshot wound to the head, according to prosecutors.
“Freedom of expression, in all its forms, is a fundamental right of citizens,” Baja California Prosecutor General said in a statement.
Martinez, who worked for the media including the weekly Zeta of Tijuana, had received threats from people linked to organized crime, according to a media law group, Yo si soy periodista (I am a journalist).
Authorities were also called in to investigate an attack that led to the death of another journalist and social media activist, Jose Luis Gamboa, in the city of Xalapa in the eastern state of Veracruz.
Gamboa was taken to hospital on January 10 after being stabbed and left lying on the street, but his body was not identified until Friday.
It was unclear if the murder was related to his work.
Gamboa is not known to have been threatened, according to the State Commission for the Attention and Protection of Journalists.
Despite this, the media rights watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged prosecutors to carefully investigate the murder.
#Mexico, the world’s deadliest media country, continues to sink deeper into a spiral of violence with 2 journalists murdered in less than a week https://t.co/rOiajO9rQe THREAD
– RSF (@RSF_inter) January 18, 2022 “Gamboa had condemned and strongly criticized local authorities for their relationship to organized crime”, it tweeted.
The RSF regularly ranks Mexico, along with war-torn countries such as Afghanistan and Yemen, as the world’s most dangerous news media outlets.
At least seven journalists were murdered in Mexico in 2021, according to an AFP bill, although it has not been determined whether all the murders were linked to their work.
More than 100 reporters have been murdered since 2000 in Mexico and only a fraction of the crimes have resulted in convictions.