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IAPA condemns deportation of journalist from Venezuela

Published:Wednesday | October 9, 2019 | 12:00 AM

Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) President Christopher Barnes has condemned the deportation of renowned British columnist and writer John Carlin from Venezuela.

According to the National Press Workers’ Union of Venezuela, Carlin, who works with the Clarín newspaper of Argentina, was declared inadmissible upon entering the Simón Bolívar International Airport on Monday and subsequently deported from the South American country.

The journalist was due to give a lecture on Nelson Mandela, the South African case and solutions to political conflicts.

Barnes, who became IAPA president on Monday, said that Carlin’s deportation “underlines the lack of tolerance and contempt of the regime of Nicolás Maduro for the discussion of ideas”.

“We are not surprised by this anti-freedom of expression reaction that the IAPA has been denouncing for more than a decade,” added Barnes, who is managing director of The Gleaner Company (Media) Limited.

For his part, the president of the IIP Press Freedom Committee, Roberto Rock, of La Silla Rota portal in Mexico City, Mexico, said that “preventing the entry of a leading journalist such as Carlin confirms international denunciations against the government of Venezuela as a violator of freedom of expression and of the press”.

The report on press freedom in Venezuela presented at the IAPA meeting held from October 4 to 7 in Miami, Florida, detailed the high level of hostility against local media and journalists through direct aggressions, theft of work equipment, kidnappings and expulsions from the country was the case of Univisión journalist Jorge Ramos after being detained for more than two hours at the Miraflores Palace, the official workplace of President Maduro.