Magazine article Editor & Publisher

The Press in the Hemisphere

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

The Press in the Hemisphere

Article excerpt

The press in the hemisphere

The Inter American Press Association through its continuing Committee on Freedom of the Press has fought many oppressive dictators over the last 40 years. Most of them have been thrown out of office, or retired, and been replaced by democratically elected governments. The exceptions, of course, are Cuba and Haiti.

It would not have been surprising, therefore, if members of IAPA had said to themselves that they had accomplished their purpose and should rest on their laurels. But they have not. They turned up at IAPA's 47th General Assembly in larger numbers than in the last four years, realizing that this part of the association's work has not been completed, and probably never will be.

The chairman of IAPA's Committee on Freedom of the Press said in Sao Paulo last week: "In a moment of euphoria, in the glow of democratic advances in the continent, a member ironically declared that soon the committee would have little left to do. Events, unfortunately, have proved our colleague wrong."

While the ham-handed abuse of the press by governments has decreased, efforts to restrict the press by legal means and violent actions by unofficial groups and terrorists are on the upswing.

Murder of journalists is still the most popular form of censorship in some areas of Latin America. …

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