Prominent Journalist Décio Sá Killed in Brazil
Freedom House laments the killing on April 23 of journalist and blogger Décio Sá, and urges Brazilian authorities to take concrete action to prevent future attacks against journalists. Sá was shot to death by a gunman in São Luís with a police-exclusive pistol, according to initial inquiries. Sá was a reporter for the newspaper O Estado do Maranhão and ran a widely-read blog, Blog do Décio. During his 17-year career, Sá was well-known for his investigative reporting on local politicians and corruption.
“Brazil is rapidly becoming one of the most dangerous countries for journalists, particularly those covering corruption and human rights,” said Viviana Giacaman, director for Latin America programs at Freedom House, “Sá is the fourth Brazilian journalist to be killed in 2012, the highest rate in the region. We call on the authorities to take action and put an end to the impunity surrounding these crimes.”
Brazil is ranked Free in the Freedom in the World 2012, Freedom House's survey of political rights and civil liberties, and Partly Free in Freedom of the Press 2011. Since 2011, there has been an uptick in violence against Brazilian journalists –Sá is one of several journalists killed in 2012 for reporting on local corruption. In February 2012, journalists Paulo Roberto Cardoso Rodrigues and Mario Lopes were killed in separate incidents for attempting to uncover local corruption.