February 9, 2019 / 7:18 PM / a year ago

Mexican radio journalist shot dead in Tabasco state

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - A radio news host in Mexico’s Gulf Coast state of Tabasco was shot dead on Saturday, officials said, marking the second journalist murder this year as the country grapples with record violence that has claimed the lives of numerous reporters.

Jesus Eugenio Ramos died Saturday morning at a hospital in the city of Emiliano Zapata due to gunshot injuries, the Tabasco prosecutor’s office said in a statement. Tabasco Governor Adan Augusto Lopez said he lamented the loss of the reporter, known locally as “Chuchin,” and said his murder would be investigated.

“He was a prestigious reporter ... a program with a long history in Zapata,” he told news outlet Tabasco Hoy in a video posted on Twitter.

Ramos hosted the news program “Our Region Today” on a local station. He was having breakfast at a hotel near the radio station when he was shot, according to Tabasco Today.

His death was the third to occur since President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador took office on Dec. 1.

Murders in Mexico jumped by a third to more than 33,000 last year, hitting a record about a decade after the start of a military-led campaign to battle drug trafficking.

Local journalists nationwide have fallen victim to the violence, prompting the Committee to Protect Journalists to classify Mexico as the most dangerous country in the Western Hemisphere for media workers.

Article 19, which defends freedom of expression and access to information, documented the murder of 122 journalists in Mexico since 2000.

Reporting by Daina Beth Solomon and Sharay Angulo; Editing by Leslie Adler

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