Mexican leading investigative journalist in combating drug traffickers is shot dead

Award-winning drug reporter Javier Valdez was shot dead by unidentified attackers on a street near his office in Mexico's Culiacan on Monday, AP reported.

During his career spanning almost three decades, Valdez wrote extensively on drug-trafficking and organized crime in Mexico, including the powerful Sinaloa cartel.

Valdez, a father of two, was at least the fifth journalist killed this year in Mexico, which free-press groups have named as one of the most risky countries for journalists. From an interview with DuncanTucker https://t.co/Q3hqU4VIO1 ...

The attack makes him the sixth journalist to have been killed in Mexico this year.

Pena Nieto condemned Valdez's killing and said he had instructed federal prosecutors to support local authorities investigating "this outrageous crime".

Mexico is one of the most unsafe places in the world to be a journalist, the Committee to Protect Journalists says.

"Being a journalist is like being on a black list", he said past year at the launch...

Valdez was a well-known reporter who also worked as a correspondent for the national newspaper La Jornada.

Valdez knew well the dangers of reporting on cartel activity, telling the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) a few weeks before his murder that he was concerned for his safety.

La Jornada reported that Valdez Cárdenas had received multiple anonymous death threats within the last three months.

The former is a look at the relationship between journalism and organized crime, and the latter chronicles the lives of young people swept up in Mexico's criminal underworld. "I don't want to be asked, 'What were you doing in the face of so much death. why didn't you say what was going on?'"

The other four journalists killed this year were also targeted while out and about.

Mexico is one of the most risky places to be a journalist, with the vast majority of attacks on the press unpunished.

The special prosecutor's office rarely opens probes into the killing of journalists, leaving the job instead to local authorities, according to the CPJ.

He compiled much of his reporting into several books, the most recent of which, Narcoperiodismo, was published late previous year. "We learned how to live in times when bullets are flying around us".

At least 104 journalists have been murdered in Mexico since 2000, according to the New York Times.

In the case of Valdez, "his loss is a blow to Mexican journalism and to the Mexican public, who see a shadow of silence spreading across the country", said Joel Simon, the CPJ's executive director, in a statement.

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