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How CPJ investigates and classifies attacks on the press

OCTOBER 15, 2003
Posted: October 20, 2003

Canal 13
Radio Pío XII

Unidentified attackers blew up the transmission equipment at TV station Canal 13 and Catholic radio station Radio Pío XII, both based in the city of Oruro, forcing the outlets off the air. According to Radio Pío XII journalist Grover Alejandro, listeners began calling the station at around 6 p.m. to report that they had lost Canal 13's signal, which had been intermittently feeding its audio signal from Radio Pío XII's broadcasts.

About 15 minutes later, more listeners called saying they could not receive the radio station's signal. Other callers said they had heard two explosions. Alejandro told CPJ that a security guard on the hill where the transmitters are located said that several hooded men armed with handguns had subdued him and detonated two bombs, destroying the equipment.

Both Radio Pío XII, which is affiliated with the Educación Radiofónica de Bolivia (ERBOL) radio network, and Canal 13, which is run by the Technical University of Oruro, had extensively covered the recent mass protests against the government. University officials blamed the attack on the government, according to the Oruro daily La Patria.