SNTP denounced the closure of nine stations in the state of Zulia on #6Sep

Association of Journalists denounces the closure of 46 stations in just four months

The closures of stations of which the CNP has a record so far have taken place in the states of Zulia (19), Cojedes (14), Sucre (4), Yaracuy (3), Portuguesa (2), Carabobo (2) and Barins (2)

The National Association of Journalists of Venezuela (CNP) denounced this Saturday the closure of 46 radio stations in seven states of the country, which were taken off the air by the telecommunications regulator in the last four months.

The general secretary of the CNP, Delvalle Canelón, explained to EFE that these closures have been carried out since last July by the National Telecommunications Commission (Conatel), an entity that not only orders the stations to go off the air, but also seizes the transmission equipment of these platforms, an action that it described as a theft.

The union spokeswoman explained that the closures of those registered so far have taken place in the states of Zulia (19), Cojedes (14), Sucre (4), Yaracuy (3), Portuguesa (2), Carabobo (2 ) and Barinas (2).

“We are concerned because this represents a new attack by the government on its so-called communication hegemony that is increasingly closing in on the few media outlets that remain,” he said.

Canelón pointed out that the regulatory body has denied these stations the license to operate on a regular basis. This, despite the fact that they have submitted the documentation required for this purpose on several occasions.

He added that in recent months radio information programs that broadcast comments or make community complaints “that come out of what they (the State) consider to be freedom of expression” have also been ordered off the air.

*Also read: Journalism Guild rejects access restrictions in Las Tejerías

On its Twitter account, the CNP denounced that these events “contribute to the policy of censorship promoted by the Venezuelan State.” He assured that this fact places the country and its citizens at the “greatest threshold of informative obscurantism.”

The journalists’ union recalled that reporting cannot be translated into a crime. Also that freedom of information and expression are human rights guaranteed in the Venezuelan Constitution.

On August 12, the National Union of Press Workers asked the Ombudsman’s Office to mediate so that “the attack against radio stations and other media outlets” in Cojedes state ceased. In that state, Conatel took six stations off the air during July.

The last stations to fall

The CNP’s complaint comes just one day after the closure of two stations in Carabobo statebelonging to the Unión Radio circuit in Valencia, 105.3 FM and Play Top 91.5 FM.

The National Union of Press Workers (SNTP) spoke out against this practice and demanded that Conatel cease the persecution of social communicators and the media.

“We demand that Conatel cease the persecution against radio stations throughout the country. It is a violation of the right to freedom of expression, information and work,” they demanded on their Twitter account.

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