Program director killed in Cartagena, Colombia

On August 22, media worker Atilano Segundo Pérez Barrios, 52, was killed outside his home in Cartagena by unknown gunmen on motorcycles.

Four years ago, Pérez founded an informative program for Radio Vigía de Todelar: "El Diario de Marialabaja" (Marialabaja Daily). On the program, Pérez discussed different events and information regarding this municipality located in Montes de María region, center of the department of Bolivar. The radio program was well known for denouncing corruption, including naming individuals on the air.

Pérez broadcast his last radio program on the increasing influence of paramilitary groups in different establishments in Marialabaja. He pointed out that these illegal groups sponsored some candidates running for mayor.

Police authorities said an investigation is underway to find those responsible for this crime, which saddens the entire journalistic community in the department of Bolivar.

In Marialabaja, 595 militants from the North Block of United Self Defense Forces of Colombia were demobilized in July 2005 during a peace process held with the national government.

Center of Solidarity
International Federation of Journalists