July 25, 2018 5:55 PM ET
A court order has been released to a government official by one of a Guatemalan judge on 17th July 2018 to sue Jose Ruben Zamora, a journalist due to a psychological violence and discrimination. Apart from that Zamora was informed not to write any article on law implemented to prevent violence against women. This was informed to CPJ by Zamora on 19th July 2018 through a phone interview.
According to The Reporter, Zamora is one of a leading investigative journalist who used to publish news on outlet elPeriodico. Due to judge’s order Zamora has to stop working on his tasks and it was informed to Guaelaman Foreign Minister Sandra Jovel. Apart from news publication ban, Zamora will not have permission to reach her home or workplace for three months too.
During the discussion Zamora had with CPJ he said all these things happens after his outlet has released a news on Guatemalan government’s foreign policy and jovel’s work. Recently some articles were published on the mismanagement within the foreign Ministry which is even still not proven and was done by Zamora and elPeriodico. Apart from that it was mentioned the president Jimmy Morales is extending his public support to U.S president Donald Trump. At the same time Zamora said Guatemalan government has not raised any voice regarding the separation of families who are at the border in the U.S.
Based on the law against Femcide and other methods of violence against women, on July 5th 2018 a case has been filed by Jovel against Zamora for psychological violence against women and discrimination. According to the Guatemala City based center for informative reports on Guatemala (Cerigua) in returning to the articles done by elPeriodico referred in an abusive manner.
The journalist informed CPJ, that Jovel said she had to undergone an emotional and psychological pain due to Zamora’s criticism and her work.
Jovel used the law illegally said by Zamora to CPJ, moreover said the legal team believes this strongly. Due to the court order Zamora or any other elPeriodico’s columnist cannot publish any of the content regarding her work and at the same time none of them are not allow visiting the work place for three months.
With this situation, The ministry of foreign affairs and Jovel reject to give any statement to CPJ even over the phone or via email. But during a phone conversation CPJ had with a representative of Jovel has given a comment saying this is a personal case rather than an official matter.
Meantime Zamora has informed CPJ that he has already appealed to revise the court order from the Guatemalan constitutional court.
In December 2013 Zamora has undergone a situation same like this. So this is not the first time that the law used against Zamora. In December 2013 due to a critical article published in elPeriodico Vice President Roxana Baldetti charged Zamora for the same mistake under the same law of psychological damage. Baldetti is now in jail due to a customs corruption said by Knight Center for journalism in the Amerricas. Due to this Baldetti has to tender his resignation as well. Even the situation is like this Zamora has informed CPJ still her case against him is there.
Zamora told CPJ, “The law is very serious and randomly used; the law has many disagreements and discussions. He has pointed out to CPJ that any of the public officials can raise it against the journalists without any further investigations”.
1995 Zamora has won the CPJ international Press Freedom Award and was the target of violent attacks meanwhile there were many cyber-attacks for elPeriodico too.
INTERNATIONAL CENTER FOR THE PROTECTION AND FREEDOM OF JOURNALISTS