CPJ condemns the murder of Colombian Journalist

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August 27, 1998

His Excellency Andrès Pastrana
President of Colombia
Bogota, Colombia


Your Excellency:

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) is writing to condemn the murder of Nelson Osorio Patino, and to urge an impartial and comprehensive investigation into this crime.

According to local journalists, Osorio was killed this morning at 7:50 a.m as he waited for a car repair shop to open near Avenida Boyuca in western Bogota. A man walked up to Osorio and shot him twice in the head and twice in the shoulder, then fled on a motorcycle driven by an accomplice. Police have not yet established a motive for the crime.

Osorio was a sports reporter and producer with the "Gran Prix" sports program, broadcast on Señal Colombia. He was also the owner of a regional sports newspaper in Florence, Caquet, and owner of a local news show, "Revista 7." He previously worked as a regional correspondent for the Bogota daily El Tiempo and RCN radio. He had covered the Olympic games in Seoul and Atlanta and, more recently, the World Cup soccer tournament in France.

As an organization of journalists dedicated to the defense of our colleagues around the world, CPJ is alarmed by the escalating violence against journalists in Colombia. CPJ has documented the murder of seven journalists in Colombia this year, more than any other country. Four were killed in direct reprisal for their work as journalists.

We call on Your Excellency to devote the full resources of your office to bring to justice those responsible for the murder of Osorio, as well as the killers of the six other murdered Colombian journalists.


Ann K. Cooper
Executive Director

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His Excellency Andrés Pastrana
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