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Journalists in Peril
Journalists Memorial Rededication
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JOSE  AMAYA JACINTO

News Organization: RADIO SATELITE

Died: 1998

Location: PERU

Killed with his journalist wife, Isabel Chumpitaz Panta, by a group of 12 gunmen who burst into their home in Piura April 6. “Who’s the journalist who defends poor people?” one demanded. As soon as Chumpitaz identified herself, she was beaten and shot at point-blank range. Her husband was shot when he tried to intervene. Family members were beaten and stabbed after the murders. “This crime is the most heinous recourse of the enemies of democracy, for whom words are more dangerous than bullets,” said Danilo Arbilla, press freedom chairman of the Inter American Press Association. Amaya was a regular contributor to his wife’s daily radio show “The People’s Voice,” advocating farmers’ rights. Three of the accused gunmen were prosecuted as members of organized crime and received life imprisonment under Peru’s terrorism law.