Access Now condena el llamado de AMLO a cortar el financiamiento de Artículo 19

Access Now condemns AMLO’s call to cut funding for Article 19

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Access Now is outraged and alarmed by Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s (AMLO) recent request to the U.S. government to stop funding the Mexico and Central America branch of freedom of expression organization, Article 19, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

President López Obrador’s request puts the integrity and safety of human rights defenders and journalists in Mexico at risk by creating an environment of hostility and stigmatization towards those who work towards guaranteeing the free expression of ideas in the country — which is indispensable in democratic societies.

AMLO’s request to stop U.S. Article 19 funding could have devastating consequences beyond Mexican borders. This branch is a regional hub in Central America and we must ensure its economic independence is protected. The work carried out by Article 19 is more critical than ever, as we watch the attacks on democracy across Mexico and Central America play out. Article 19’s work is to fundamentally guarantee a safe environment for the practice of journalism in Mexico, one of the most dangerous countries to practice this profession. Agneris Sampieri, LATAM Public Policy Analyst at Access Now

Beyond the impact  of the president’s request, AMLO’s statements are jeopardizing the work of civil society in the region, potentially deterring other organizations and journalists from criticizing or standing up the to administration.

While USAID is among several funding sources that support Article 19 financially, the agency has no agenda or work objectives, which allows the organization to act in an independent, impartial, and non-partisan manner.

The financing of civil society organizations is fundamental to maintain their autonomy and, through their work, to strengthen democracy and the protection of human rights in the country. Mexican authorities must avoid obstacles that prevent them from carrying out their work. Leopoldo Maldonado, director of Article 19’s Mexico and Central America office

Access Now calls on the Mexican government to respect the work of Article 19 and freedom of expression in the country. The international community must continue its support for organizations working for human rights and freedom of expression in Mexico and throughout the Latin America and Caribbean region.