Mexico’s freedom of data institute, a authorities company, mentioned Thursday that it might begin an investigation into the president’s disclosure on nationwide tv of the private cellphone variety of a journalist for The New York Occasions.

The investigation facilities on a choice by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador throughout a televised information convention on Thursday that left many aghast in Mexico, one of many deadliest international locations on this planet for journalists. At the least 128 journalists have been killed in Mexico since 2006, in accordance with the Committee to Shield Journalists.

In the course of the information convention, Mr. López Obrador learn aloud from an electronic mail from Natalie Kitroeff, The New York Occasions’s bureau chief for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. She had requested remark for an article revealing that U.S. legislation enforcement officers had for years been trying into claims that allies of Mr. López Obrador met with and took tens of millions of {dollars} from drug cartels.

Along with railing in opposition to Ms. Kitroeff and figuring out her by title, Mr. López Obrador publicly recited her cellphone quantity.

“That is tantamount to doxxing, unlawful by Mexican privateness legal guidelines and locations reporters in danger,” Jan-Albert Hootsen, the Mexico consultant for the Committee to Shield Journalists, mentioned on X, the social media platform.

Mexico’s Nationwide Institute of Transparency, Entry to Info and Private Information Safety, or INAI, mentioned in a statement that its investigation would search to determine whether or not Mr. López Obrador had violated Mexican laws defending private information. The institute runs Mexico’s freedom of data system, which was created greater than 20 years in the past to make authorities operations extra clear and curb abuses of energy.

Mr. López Obrador, whose six-year time period is coming to an finish this 12 months, has lengthy maintained a confrontational relationship with the information media and frequently assaults journalists by title at his morning information conferences.

The transfer in opposition to the journalist for The Occasions follows weeks of attacks on a ProPublica reporter, which got here after the information group revealed a narrative final month detailing an earlier investigation into accusations that drug cartels had donated tens of millions to Mr. López Obrador’s first presidential marketing campaign, in 2006, which he misplaced. The president referred to as the reporter, Tim Golden, a “pawn” and “a mercenary within the service” of the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Individually, The Occasions’s report on Thursday revealed a more moderen inquiry throughout Mr. López Obrador’s presidency, which began in 2018, through which American legislation enforcement officers examined claims that confidants of Mr. López Obrador had acquired tens of millions of {dollars} from drug cartels. The article cited U.S. information and three folks acquainted with the matter.

“This can be a troubling and unacceptable tactic from a world chief at a time when threats in opposition to journalists are on the rise,” The New York Occasions mentioned in a statement on Thursday in response to Mr. López Obrador’s information convention.

The USA by no means opened a proper investigation into Mr. López Obrador, and the officers concerned in the end shelved the inquiry after concluding that the U.S. authorities had little urge for food to pursue allegations in opposition to the chief of a key American ally.

Throughout their inquiry, U.S. officers recognized attainable hyperlinks between the cartels and Mr. López Obrador’s allies and advisers after he took workplace, however didn’t discover any direct ties between the president himself and felony teams.

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