MEXICO CITY (AP) — A journalist was among four people killed inside a beer shop in central Mexico, the 13th media worker killed in the country this year.
San Luis de la Paz Mayor Luis Sánchez said Ernesto Méndez, director of the news site Tu Voz, or Your Voice, was with four other men when they were attacked. The fifth person was seriously wounded and taken to a hospital, he said.
Guanajuato Gov. Diego Rodríguez Vallejo condemned the Tuesday night killings via Twitter Wednesday.
Sánchez said that at this point it was unknown whether the attack was related to Méndez’s journalistic work, his role as representative of local businesses in the planning of an upcoming fair or something else.
Press freedom organization Article 19 called on the government to offer protection to Méndez’s colleagues and relatives.
Méndez had also worked until three years ago at the news site Zona Franca, according to its director Carmen Martínez.
It was not immediately clear whether Méndez was enrolled in the federal government’s protection program for journalists and human rights defenders under threat.
While organized crime is often involved in journalist killings, small town officials or politicians with political or criminal motivations are often suspects as well. Journalists running small news outlets in Mexico’s interior are easy targets.