Mexican journalist Lydia Cacho, who for years has worked to highlight violence against women and children, has fled the country after receiving death threats, a media rights campaigner said Monday.
“She has left,” Ricardo Gonzalez, a member of London-based media rights organization Article 19, told AFP, adding that her absence from Mexico was “temporary.”
“As the state has done nothing following the latest threats, she is going to use this time to prepare a security strategy so she will be able to come back to continue to work.”
“She is not giving up journalism, nor is she abandoning her defense of basic human rights,” Gonzalez said.
In 2000, Cacho founded an association for the protection of women and children against domestic and sexual violence.
In her 2005 book “The Demons of Eden,” she lifted the lid on a pedophilia network, pointing the finger of blame at Mexican businessmen and politicians.
Since the publication of that book, Cacho has received regular threats and has been under police protection.
On July 29, the 49-year-old investigative journalist received a threatening message at her home in the popular resort city of Cancun via the radio security system in the house.
“Do not mess with us or we will send you home in pieces,” a man’s voice said. Cacho’s security team said the suspect must have used satellite technology to tap into the radio communications system.
“The delivery of the threat over her own emergency communication system should be particularly alarming to Mexican authorities, who must ensure her safety,” Carlos Lauria of the US-based Committee to Protect Journalists said.
More than 80 reporters have been killed in Mexico since 2000, according to the National Human Rights Committee.