An indigenous group armed with machetes detained thirteen journalists invited on a promotional trip for tourism in Michoacán, as well as eight employees from a publicity company who planned on filming a commercial. The journalists, all of who belong to local media sources in Michoacán, had been invited by the government to visit the region, however, they were detained in the coastal community of Pichilinguillo by inhabitants of Pómaro.
Sources from the District Attorney’s office told EFE that the indigenous group confused the journalists with a team of publicists hired by the brewery Modelo to film a commercial. The indigenous group blames Grupo Modelo, the company that makes the beer Corona, for wanting to film on their land without asking them for authorization. Although the journalists identified themselves as such, the locals stripped the reporters of their equipment.
Hours later a group of eight publicists, accompanied by a representative from the Michoacán Secretariat of Tourism (Secretaría de Turismo de Michoacán), showed up and were also detained by the indigenous group. Michoacán authorities and authorities from Aquila had to negotiate with the inhabitants of Pómaro to set the employees from the advertising company and official free. The local government is working with the indigenous group in order to retrieve the stolen equipment as soon as possible.
The government of Michoacán, according to Agencia EFE, indicated in a press release yesterday that the reporters, photographers, and cameramen find themselves in good health in the capital of Morelia, as well as the publicists after being detained Saturday afternoon and freed hours later.
Agencia EFE. “Indígenas mexicanos retienen a 13 periodistas y 8 publicistas y los roban.” Agencia EFE. 14 Junio, 2010.
Martínez, Ernesto. “Retienen a periodistas en Michoacán.” La Jornada. 13 Junio, 2010.
García, Francisco. “Libres, 28 retenidos por comuneros de Michoacán.” Milenio. 13 Junio, 2010.