Mexico urged to free jailed scribes

Paris, Sep 4 (IANS/EFE) Reporters Without Borders (RSF), a group based in Paris, has urged Mexican authorities to release four journalists arrested while covering a protest against Mexico President Enrique Peña Nieto's education overhaul.

"We call for the immediate release of these four journalists and the withdrawal of the charges against them," said the group in a statement Tuesday.

"Their only crime was that they were trying to do their duty as reporters and guarantee the public's right to information," RSF said of Gustavo Ruiz Lizarraga, Pavel Alejandro Primo Noriega, Estela Morales and Alejandro Amado Fraustro.

The arrests, made during a demonstration Sunday in Mexico City, "recall the tumultuous start to President Peña's term, when two photographers, Mircea Topoleanu and Brandon Daniel Bazan, were arrested during demonstrations Dec 1 2012", RSF said.

Ruiz Lizarraga, a photographer with news agency SubVersiones, was shoved into a police wagon while filming the cops arresting protesters.

Before being taken into custody, he handed his camera to a colleague and the video footage he captured "provided evidence of the police abuses and disproved the accusation that have been made against the detained journalists", RSF said.

All four journalists have been charged with endangering public order, obstructing authorities, fabricating and carrying objects for the purpose of violence and resisting arrest.

--IANS/EFE

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