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Dear OAS Ministers of Foreign Affairs: Ahead of the assembly of the Organization of American States on Friday, the Committee to Protect Journalists urges you to oppose any attempts to debilitate the regional human rights system. The failure of member states to preserve the autonomy and independence of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and its special rapporteur on freedom of expression would make citizens throughout the hemisphere more vulnerable to human rights violations and represent a blow to democracy in the Americas.
About 30 trucks from Transcaribe Trading (TCT), a local construction company in Panama City, surrounded the offices of the daily La Prensa on August 2, 2012, from around 10 p.m. until 1:30 a.m., preventing the paper's trucks and employees from leaving the premises, according to news reports. TCT workers told local journalists that they were there because the daily's reports were jeopardizing the future of the company, and thus their jobs, according to news reports.
New York, March 2, 2011--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on the Panamanian government to allow two Spanish journalists and human rights activists who were expelled to return to the country. The journalists were covering and documenting an indigenous demonstration on Saturday when they were detained by authorities and accused of "disrupting public order" according to an official statement.
New York, October 7, 2010--A Panamanian court of appeals has convicted two TV journalists of criminal defamation and banned them from professional work for one year, news reports said. While President Ricardo Martinelli said he would pardon the journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today that lawmakers should repeal all criminal penalties for defamation.
New York, April 30, 2009--A Panama City court has sentenced leading Panamanian
New York, September 8, 2008--The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned by the decision of a Panamanian civil court on Friday to order the seizure of assets belonging to a weekly newspaper, as well as portions of two staff members' salaries. The ruling came after the publication ran a story on alleged tax evasion by a local real estate tycoon.
Eleventh Criminal Court Judge Josefina Sclopis issued the ruling on Friday against Brown, a columnist with the daily La Estrella de Panamá, the newspaper reported. The judge's decision stemmed from a criminal defamation suit against the sports reporter filed by the director of the Panamanian Sports Institute, Ramón Cardoze, after Brown denounced alleged irregularities in his column. The Panamanian Sports Institute is the government body tasked with promoting sports in Panama.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.