EU countries, Canada show ‘grave concern’ over Lapid’s death

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 5) — Canada and European Union (EU) member states France, Netherlands, and Denmark on Tuesday expressed “grave concern” over the killing of veteran radio broadcaster Percival Mabasa, widely known as Percy Lapid.

In a joint statement, Canada and Netherlands, co-chairs of the Media Freedom Coalition, urged the Philippine government for an immediate investigation on the incident, a call which France, Denmark, and the EU backed.

“We express our grave concern about the killing of broadcast commentator Mr. Percival Mabasa (Percy Lapid) by unidentified assailants last night. We extend our deepest sympathies to his family & loved ones,” the Canadian Embassy wrote.

“Journalist killings strike at the very core of media freedom & can create a chilling effect that curtails the ability of journalists to report news freely & safely,” it added.

Reports said Lapid was shot in Las Piñas City Monday night after receiving death threats, prompting the government, including the Commission on Human Rights, to launch probes into his death. 

Calls for justice over the shooting escalated as colleagues and listeners recalled him as a fearless journalist. 

Senior Deputy Executive Secretary Hubert Guevarra earlier said President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. was "concerned of what had happened” to Lapid, a known critic of the Marcoses. 

The Canadian Embassy also urged authorities to "take concrete steps" to create a "safe environment for journalists to carry out their work without fear for their lives and safety."