Two Mexican journalists were murdered in the space of 24 hours Friday, local media reported, identifying the victims as Zihuatanejo-based editor, Edgar Alberto Nava Lopez, and Veracruz reporter, Jorge Celestino Ruiz.
The pair of deaths amounts to three journalists murdered in the last week and a final national toll of 10 this year.
Nava was the first victim, shot and killed at a restaurant in a coastal city in the state of Guerrero. A journalist and editor, Nava worked for multiple publications, namely the Diario de Zihuatanejo, El Despertar de la Costa and La Verdad de Zihuatanejo. The details of his murder have not been released and it is unsure whether his death is connected to his journalistic endeavors as he had been a hiatis at the time.
Most recently, his time had been devoted to his duties as a Regulations Director in the city, the Prosecutor’s Office of Guerrero said.
Hours later, Celestino was shot dead in Actopan. He had worked as a reported with the state’s oldest newspaper Xalapa and had been trying to keep a low profile after suffering a brutal attack last October.
Celestino had received numerous threats and his home was riddled with bullets. Again, the reasons for the attack and perpetrators are still being determined.
These murders follow the first of this week’s when Guerrero al Instante director Rogelio Barragan was found dead in the trunk of a car in Morelos. He had received numerous death threats, warning him to stop publishing political and police news in the Chihuahua newspaper, El Monitor de Parral which was later attacked with incendiary bombs.
“We condemn the cowardly murder of a local media correspondent, Jorge Ruiz. We will meet those responsible; His murder will not go unpunished. For hours now we continue in the coordinated operation to capture the culprits,” said Veracruz Governor Cuitlahuac Garcia Jimenez.
The number of killings continues to rise in Mexico with more than 17,000 homicides registered over the first six months of the year, reaching an all-time high in spite of the efforts made by the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to combat violence in the country.