“A cross between Christiane Amanpour and a dog with a bone.”
That’s how the Los Angeles Times describes the prominent, hard-hitting journalist Carmen Aristegui, who is famous throughout Mexico for her tough investigations into government corruption.
In addition to blogging at Aristegui Noticias (“News”), Aristegui anchors a news program on CNN Spanish and, up until March, hosted a morning talk show on MVS radio in Mexico City, daily fare for many Mexican commuters.
Last month, MVS radio fired two of her staff investigators — the network says they had used the MVS logo, without authorization, on a new whistle-blowing website, Mexicoleaks.
Those same two journalists had, only four months earlier, revealed a questionable real estate deal involving Mexico’s first lady, former soap opera star Angelica Rivera, and a contracting firm that does lucrative business with the Mexican government.
Months earlier, the same two journalists implicated a leading Mexico City politician in a prostitution ring. He denied the accusation and was later exonerated by an electoral tribunal.
In her March 13 broadcast, Aristegui called for Daniel Lizárraga and Irving Huerta to be reinstated to their jobs. MVS said it would not give into her ultimatum and fired her for “breach of trust” three days later.
Aristegui calls her dismissal is an attack on free speech. Her supporters say they believe the government pressured MVS into firing Aristegui and her team, and have launched a twitter campaign using the hashtag #MexicoWantsAristeguiBack.
See statements by Mexican political analyst, writer, and university professor Denise Dresser and prominent journalist and author, Lydia Cacho, in video below:
All this comes as the government struggles for popularity and public trust ahead of mid-term elections in June. Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto’s approval rating has slumped dramatically in the wake of the disappearance of 43 students last September from Iguala, in Guerrero State—reportedly at the hands of police officials linked to drug traffickers.