Brussels, 26 January 2012 (ITUC OnLine): Gilda Silvestrucci, a member of the Journalists for Life and Freedom of Expression group, received death threats by telephone on 24 January. The ITUC firmly condemns the constant threats against journalists who dare to exercise their profession.
Gilda Silvestrucci was among the women who headed the call for a demonstration on 13 December 2011 in defence of the lives of Honduran journalists, following the murder of her colleague Luz Marina Paz Villalobos, who was killed by hit men on 6 December 2011. A total of 17 journalists have been killed since Profirio Lobo and his government came to power on 27 January 2010. Not one of these murder cases has been cleared up.
Itsmana Pineda Platero, another of the women journalists involved in organising the 13 December demonstration, has also been receiving repeated death threats in the form of calls and texts to her mobile phone.
In a letter to the Honduran authorities, the ITUC has urged President Porfirio Lobo and his administration to take every step necessary to bring an end to the constant persecution of Honduran journalists who are simply doing their jobs. “Freedom of expression is an essential prerequisite for a democracy based on the rule of law and that respects its citizens’ fundamental rights,” underlined ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow. “An end must be brought to impunity, and those responsible at every level for these constant attacks against journalists must be brought to justice.”