Journalist murdered in central Mexico

Puebla, Mexico, Apr 16 (EFE).- A journalist was murdered as he left a bank in Puebla, a city in central Mexico, officials said.

Alonso de la Colina Sordo, who was the host of a television show in the southern state of Guerrero until February, was gunned down on Monday.

Guerrero is one of the state's most affected by drug-related violence in Mexico.

The 50-year-old journalist was shot near the heart outside a bank branch in a shopping center in Puebla.

The journalist "was approached in the shopping center's parking lot by a man," police chief Juan Luis Galan said.

The gunman "fired twice in the air to scare him and then he killed him," the police chief said.

Security guards administered first aid to the reporter, but he died a few minutes after being shot, investigators said.

Authorities have not determined whether the motive for the killing was robbery or it was related to De la Colina's reporting.

De la Colina, who hosted the "Hechos en Guerrero" news show, announced on the air Feb. 15 that he was leaving to pursue new projects.

The television station operated by the De la Colina Sordo family for 16 years in the Pacific resort city of Acapulco closed a day later.

The station recently returned to the air, reporting the news in Acapulco, one of Mexico's main tourist destinations.

A total of 82 journalists have been murdered and 18 others have been reported missing since 2005 in Mexico, the Mexican National Human Rights Commission, or CNDH, said in a report released in December.

Some 658 complaints were received from members of the news media from Jan. 1, 2005, to Nov. 30, 2012, the rights body said.

An International Press Institute, or IPI, and World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, or WAN-IFRA, delegation visited Mexico in February and called for more protection for journalists.

Both the IPI and Reporters Without Borders, or RSF, ranked Mexico as the fourth most dangerous country in the world for journalists in 2012, trailing only Syria, Somalia and Pakistan.