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Asia and the Pacific
Western Asia

Costa Rica - October 2022

Constitutional Chamber determines press freedom violation from high-level officials

In a context of increasing confrontation between President Rodrigo Chaves and members of the press, the country’s Constitutional Chamber granted an appeal promoted by journalists from newspaper La Nación, against the closure of “Parque Viva”, an entertainment centre owned by the same group. Appellants had argued that the measure was taken after President Chaves had publicly vowed to take measures against the newspaper and other media outlets. The Chamber determined an indirect violation against freedom of press had been committed by the president and health secretary, and ordered the annulment of the measure. 

Days after the ruling, Chaves criticized the Court, claiming that it had favoured private interests to the detriment of the health and safety concerns his administration used to justify the closure. President Chaves has made public remarks undermining press freedom, particularly against outlets that have been critical and have reported on previous accusations of sexual harassment.

Sources: Americas Quarterly, La Republica, Q Costa Rica, Sociedad Interamericana de Prensa, The Progressive

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