Peru: radio station closed in conflicted Espinar

Radio Espinar, the local transmitter in Espinar province of Peru’s Cuzco region, issued a public protest charging that it was arbitrarily ordered closed by the Transport and Communications Ministry (MTC) March 18, charaterizing the move as “repression.” The MTC said the decision not to renew the license was taken because the station had failed to pay an application fee and its equipment was found inadequate. But Matilde Taco Llave, daughter and legal representative of station owner Marcelino Taco Quispe, called the closure a disproportionate move, and said it was really motivated by the station’s aggressive coverage of last year’s local protests against the mineral operations of multinational Xstrata. “This is a consequence of having given information about what happened in the social conflict,” she said. “We are sure that this is the cause.”

The Lima-based Press and Society Institute has urgently called upon the government to reconsider the revocation of the station’s license. (Servindi, March 18)