Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Journalist shot in Philippines dies

MANILA, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / June 17, 2009) – A journalist who was shot by gunmen in the central Philippine province of Masbate has died, media groups said on Wednesday.

Antonio Castillo was shot by two men after a brief motorcycle on June 12 in the town of Uson. The Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility said Castillo was the fifth journalist murdered in the country this year.

Castillo worked for the community paper called "Bigwas." He died while being treated at a hospital.

The Philippines is one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists -- five were murdered last year while 59 have been killed since 2001, based on records from the National Union of Journalists in the Philippines.

But Teodoro's group said 65 journalists, the majority of them radio announcers and commentators, had been killed since President Gloria Arroyo was swept into power in 2001.

Of the 65 cases, 40 were work-related, he said, adding, investigative stories about drug trafficking, gambling, corruption and other illegal activities involving officials in the country often put reporters at risk.

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