Mexican authorities are being called to launch an investigation after unidentified shooters who attacked the daughter of murdered Mexican journalist, Maria Elena Ferral, in broad daylight in Veracruz. According to a report by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), Ferral's daughter, Fernanda de Luna Ferral, was with her bodyguards in Gutierrez Zamora in Veracruz when unidentified shooters attacked on May 24th. The incident took place just two months after her mother was shot dead in the city of Papantla. 

Read: Mexican Journalist Shot Dead in Broad Daylight

De Luna Ferral was travelling by car from the city of Gutierrez Zamora to the state's capital Xalapa on Sunday when multiple shooters who were in another vehicle opened fire at her car several times. The shooters quickly left the scene after the attack. De Luna Ferral was accompanied by police officers who were assigned by the state to protect her after her mother was killed. The guards reportedly returned fire and managed to keep the attackers at bay. "I owe them my life," De Luna Ferral said. 

CPJ claims news of the attack was "shocking" primarily because it occurred while the journalist was under the protection of the federal and state government. The organization's representative, Jan-Albert Hoosten, called for the federal authorities to strengthen De Luna Ferral's protective measures as well as launch a probe to identify and punish the people who threatened and killed journalists in the nation. 

De Luna Ferral

The journalist is the editor of a local news website El Quinto Poder-a site co-founded by her mother, Maria Elena. She continued editing the website's social media page after her mother's murder on March 30th. The El Quinto Poder focuses on local news, politics, and crime. All articles are published on its Facebook page. The newspaper's website has been offline since last month. 

The Mexican editor was enrolled in Veracruz's federal protection program following her mother's death. The state also assigned police officers to keep her safe. While she has yet to receive death threats, her work on the online newspaper has made her a target. 

Maria Elena Ferral

Two men on a motorcycle killed the prominent Mexican reporter while she was leaving a notary public office on March 30th. The gunmen shot her at least eight times before they sped away. She was rushed to the nearby hospital where she died while in surgery. Law enforcement authorities have since identified and issued arrest warrants to 11 people for their involvement in the crime. At least six of the suspects were captured. Authorities are still searching for the other suspects.

According to the organization's research report, Veracruz is one of the nation's most dangerous places for journalists and reporters. Since 1992, at least seven journalists were murdered due to their work. Between 1992 and 2020, more than 120 journalists and media workers were killed in Mexico. In 2019, 11 media personnel were murdered-six of which had unconfirmed motives. 

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