An eighth journalist has been killed in Haiti this year, the Inter American Press Association said Wednesday.
Fritz Dorilas, who worked for Radio Télé Megastar and co-hosted a program called “Le droit, la loi et la justice,” which translates to “The law and justice,” was gunned down near his home in the capital of Port-au-Prince on Nov. 5, according to local media.
“We continue to deplore crimes against journalists this bloody year in our region,” said Carlos Jornet, an editor and the chair of the association’s committee on freedom of the press and information, in a statement. Jornet also urged law enforcement to investigate the pattern of killings targeting members of the media.
“The lack of justice gives even more incentive to the violent individuals,” he said.
Dorilas was killed in the community of Tabarre, which has seen a rise in gang violence. Local news reports say that armed individuals shot Dorilas near his home amid gang fighting, according to the Inter American Press Association, but additional information suggests the journalist was forcibly removed from his home and executed while the shooting happened. Authorities have not publicly confirmed details about the killing, the press association said.
Dorilas’ death marked at least the eighth murder of a Haitian journalist so far this year. Online journalist Romelo Vilsaint died on Oct. 30 when a tear gas canister hit him in the head, an incident in which witnesses said police threw tear gas and opened fire on a group of journalists demanding the release of a colleague. Vilsaint’s death sparked protests in Port-au-Prince.
Also last month, authorities found the body of slain radio journalist Garry Tess, and said that Roberson Alphonse, a reporter for Le Nouvelliste newspaper, survived a murder attempt. Alphone underwent several surgeries in Haiti and was then flown to the U.S., where he is recovering, according to Frantz Duval, the newspaper’s chief editor.
According to the Inter American Press Association, at least 39 journalists and members of the media were murdered in 10 countries this year, including Haiti and the U.S.
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