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Gunmen kill radio journalist in southern Philippines
MANILA (Reuters) - Two gunmen on a motorcycle killed a local radio commentator just after he dropped off his children to school in the southern Philippines on Monday, police said.
Areteo Padrigao was the fourth journalist killed this year in the Philippines. Many international groups including the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists list the Philippines as one of the most dangerous places in the world to work as a journalist. Fifty-nine reporters have been killed since 2001.
"We're still gathering information to determine the possible motive for the attack," said Senior Superintendent Catalino Rodriguez, police chief of Misamis Oriental province. "We don't want to speculate on whether the killing was work-related."
Padrigao was the third hard-hitting commentator from a local radio network to be killed this year in the Philippines. The gunmen shot him several times in the head and body outside the gates of a school in Gingoog City on southern Mindanao island.
Investigative stories about drug trafficking, gambling, corruption and other illegal activities involving officials in the Philippines often put reporters at risk.
Corruption in the media, with underpaid journalists sometimes taking bribes to report stories, also places reporters in danger from disgruntled paymasters or their rivals.
Under fire from local and international human rights groups for its failure to protect hundreds of journalists and left-wing activists killed over the past seven years, the government has vowed to track down killers of reporters but there have been few convictions.
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