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Radio host attacked: Bolivian journalist Fernando Vidal set on fire live on air in Yacuiba

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Radio journalist set on fire live after men stormed into studio and threw petrol over him

  • Three men arrested on suspicion of involvement in attack
  • A studio technician was also injured in an incident that may have been politically motivated

A Bolivian radio host was set on fire by four masked men while hosting his show in the southern city of Yacuiba.

Radio Popular journalist Fernando Vidal, 78, is being treated for burns after his attackers broke into the studio, poured gasoline on him and set him on fire.

Studio technician Karen Anza was also injured in the attack, which some eyewitnesses say involved Molotov cocktails.

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Ranch Riders: Two Farmers in Yacuiba, Southern Bolivia, Where the Shocking Attack Happened

Ranch Riders: Two Farmers in Yacuiba, Southern Bolivia, Where the Shocking Attack Happened

His son-in-law, Esteban Farfan, says Mr Vidal suffered burns to his face, arms and chest.

Three people have been arrested on suspicion of involvement in the attack, the BBC reports.

According to relatives, Mr Vidal was reporting on smuggling in the border area when the attack took place – Yacuiba is less than two miles from Argentina.

Mr Vidal and other journalists had recently criticized an increase in smuggling, particularly of liquefied petroleum gas.

Smuggling problem: Yacuiba is just three kilometers from the border with Argentina Smuggling problem: Yacuiba is just three kilometers from the border with Argentina

Smuggling problem: Yacuiba is just three kilometers from the border with Argentina

Mr Farfan believes the attack was politically motivated, although police have not commented.

He said Vidal had spoken out live against the provincial government.

Bolivia’s interior ministry told AFP they will conduct an “accelerated and rigorous investigation.”

It is not the first time that a Bolivian radio station has come under fire in recent months.

In June, three dynamite attacks were carried out on local stations, at Radio Emisora ​​Bolivia, Radio Vanguardia and Radio Cumbre.

Video: Journalist on fire speaks after being taken to hospital

Not the first time: the attack in Yacuiba followed in June on three radio stations elsewhere in Bolivia Not the first time: the attack in Yacuiba followed in June on three radio stations elsewhere in Bolivia

Not the first time: the attack in Yacuiba followed in June on three radio stations elsewhere in Bolivia

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