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Journalists Murdered in Philippines

Three journalists have been killed in the Philippines in the last week, according to Reporters Without Borders.

Leo Diaz, reporter for Balita News, was shot and killed by men on motorcycles in Mindanau Aug. 7. Diaz, a former policeman, often wrote about political corruption, gambling and drugs.

The day before, radio host Rudy Alicaway was killed in a similar fashion in the same region, though the radio station's manager said Alicaway did not generally deal in controversial topics.

And in Manilla, gunmen, again on motorcycles, killed Michael Marasigan and his brother. Marasigan, who had reported on drug cartels in the 1980s, according to Reporters Without Borders, was a media consultant and the former managing editor of BusinessWorld.

The country has historically been among the most dangerous for journalists. Mindanao has been under martial law since May 23 due to rebels backing the Islamic State. It has been under a state of emergency since last September since a bomb killed 14 people in Davao.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has also publicly insulted the media and threatened retaliation on articles critical of his policies, something that could ring a sympathetic note with journalists in the U.S., who have also been insulted and harshly criticized by President Donald Trump for critical stories.

(Photo via Shankar S.’s Flickr. Image taken in May 2013 and used per Creative Commons 2.0 license. The photo was cropped to fit 16x9 aspect ratio.)

John Eggerton
John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.