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JOURNALISM IN THE AMERICAS Blog

Bolivian journalists criticize anti-racism bill




The Bolivian Chamber of Deputies recently passed a controversial law that would criminalize racist or discriminatory acts, BBC Mundo reports. Journalism and media groups have said that the law, which is still waiting Senate approval, “violates freedom of expression,” because it could punish third parties for covering controversial issues.

The controversy stems from one passage from the bill, which says “media outlets that empower or publish racist or discriminatory ideas could be subject to fines and the suspension of their operating license,” El Mundo explains. Media workers could also face up to eight years in prison if convicted of broadcasting discriminatory messages, Los Tiempos adds.

Journalists argue that they could be punished for the opinions of people they interview and say that the rule is actually a gag law intended to silence opposing views. The government says the media opposes the bill because they are used to being an outlet for discriminatory speech, BBC Mundo and La Prensa report.


Other Related Headlines:
» Bolivian journalism association worred about punishments for journalists (Asociación Nacional de la Prensa)

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