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Afro-Descendant & Indigenous: News & Updates

News Article
“It is the taxpayers of the U.S. who finance the Honduran military and police. If the U.S. stops supporting this narco-state, it will stop violating our rights,” said OFRANEH’s Miranda Miranda, general coordinator of OFRANEH (Fraternal Organization of Black Hondurans). The US State Department describes Honduras as being plagued by “significant human rights issues,” including extrajudicial killings and torture, arbitrary detentions and “widespread government corruption.” And yet in April 2020, Trump decided to gift President Juan Orlando Hernández (who is facing criminal charges of drug trafficking and alleged to have used drug money to rig his election) an extra $60 million in military and security aid. Not only is the Hernández regime not “stopping drugs,” it’s also not curbing illegal immigration to the U.S. In fact, critics say Honduras’ neoliberal policies—policies that cater to transnational corporations at the expense of local residents like the Garifuna—also foster or enable factors like displacement, mass poverty, and the presence of organized crime, all of which actually drive the wave of Honduran migrants headed north toward the U.S.
News Article
Inter-American Court on Human Rights issues a ruling, 1- to require that the State of Honduras adopt all necessary and adequate measures to determine the whereabouts of Milton Joel Martínez Álvarez, Suami Aparicio Mejía García, Gerardo Misael Trochez Calix y Albert Snaider Centeno Thomas, who have been disappeared since 18 July 2020…and 2- to require the State of Honduras to adopt all appropriate measures to effectively protect the rights to life and personal integrity of the members of the Garífuna Communities of Triunfo de la Cruz and Punta Piedra that develop collectively actions in defense of the rights of the Garífuna people…
News Article
Racism and a history of violence against human rights and environmental defenders in Honduras make the Garífuna people a vulnerable target. Garífuna territory stretches along pristine Caribbean beaches and includes fertile agricultural lands that have become of interest to international tourism developers and palm oil companies. Over the course of decades, large scale economic projects (e.g., Hilton’s Indura Beach and Golf Resort) have led to land grabs and a loss of farmland that the Garífuna people had used for subsistence farming. In 2015, the Inter-American Court on Human Rights ordered the Honduran government to compensate the community of Triunfo de la Cruz for the ancestral lands that had been lost, but close to five years later, it has not complied and economic development projects continue to proliferate in Garifuna territories. Francis Lopez, a resident of Triunfo de la Cruz, described an ongoing sense of fear and insecurity in her village. When those who abducted five men from the community on July 18, wearing bulletproof vests and police uniforms, arrived in unmarked vehicles and began pounding on doors, surprised residents quickly realized what was happening. The community responded with a roadblock to try and stop the abductions, but they were shot at before three vehicles got away.
News Article
To President Juan O. Hernández of Honduras: "The abduction of "the Garífuna five" comes against the backdrop of widespread violations of the rights of the Garífuna people, including their ownership rights to ancestral lands...I should point out that this is not merely an internal matter for Honduras; this is an international human rights issue...The lawless and criminal campaign against the Garífuna people, and their leaders, in Honduras must stop.." Sincerely Yours, Dr. The Hon. Ralph E. Gonsalves Prime Minister and chair of CARICOM

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