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Honduras: News & Updates
Honduras did not experience civil war in the 1980s, but its geography (bordering El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua) made it a key location for US military operations: training Salvadoran soldiers, a base for Nicaraguan contras, military exercises for US troops. The notorious Honduran death squad Battalion 316 was created, funded and trained by the US. The state-sponsored terror resulted in the forced disappearances and extrajudicial killings of approximately 200 people during the 1980s. Many more were abducted and tortured. The 2009 military coup d’etat spawned a resurgence of state repression against the civilian population that continues today.
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July 9, 2018
At the beginning of this year, the Inter-American Court on Human Rights ruled in favor of same-sex marriage. Based on this ruling, Honduran LGBT organizations presented a constitutional challenge against Article 112 of the Honduran Constitution, which prohibits same-sex marriage. To quite some surprise, the challenge was accepted by the court. Now, to see if the state will act on it.
May 24, 2018
Continued violence and criminalization of the peaceful resistance to the Los Planes hydroelectric dam being constructed in Pajuiles, Atlántida Department. Since March 2017, Pajuiles and surrounding communities, with the support of the Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice (MADJ), have maintained an encampment to block Hidrocep (Hidroeléctrica Centrales El Progreso) from constructing the hydroelectric dam. Since the disputed presidential election in November 2017, there has been a military and police raid on MADJ’s headquarters, assaults on and surveillance of their members, and threats against Martín Fernandez Guzmán, MADJ’s General Coordinator. At least four members of MADJ have been murdered by state security forces and paramilitaries during the ongoing post-electoral crisis.
April 25, 2018
Assassanation of human rights lawyer Carlos Hernández by unidentified assailants on April 10 at his office in Tela municipality. Carlos Hernández had been legally defending Arnaldo Chacónis, the mayor of Arizona municipality, who is supporting the organized resistance against the Río Jimalito hydroelectric project, being constructed by Generación Eléctrica (INGELSA)
March 22, 2018
"We have documented grave violations against human rights defenders, like targeted killings of social movement leaders fighting for the conservation of the environment, as well as of community leaders who organised protests," states Mario Roberto Chinchilla of the Coalition against Impunity in Honduras. At pro-democracy demonstrations, "military and police officers have been observed infiltrating...with the double purpose of stirring up violence and identifying human rights defenders and leaders," according to Andrea Bolaños of the International Platform against Impunity (Pi).
March 22, 2018
Brutal murder of environmental defender Luis Fernando Ayala, age 16, in Santa Bárbara Department. He was reported missing on February 19. His mutilated body was found on February 20 with his hands missing and multiple signs of torture.
March 21, 2018
We are outraged over the continued detention of human rights defender Edwin Robelo Espinal in La Tolva prison, located in Morocelí, El Paraíso Department, and the horrific conditions that exist in this military-run maximum security prison. Arrested January 19, he is one of more than 20 political prisoners being detained in prisons throughout Honduras.
February 13, 2018
It has been 50 days since 2,800 banana workers from ten plantations went on strike against Chiquita.
February 11, 2018
false criminal charges against human rights defender Edwin Robelo Espinal, now in pre-trial detention in a high security prison for up to two years
January 25, 2018
assassination of TV reporter Igor Abisaí Padilla Chávez by four unidentified assailants in San Pedro Sula, Cortés Department
January 24, 2018
repressive actions by state security forces against pro-democracy demonstrators. Beaten: Diego Aguilar López and Wilmer Paredes (killed 2 weeks later) of MADJ (Broad Movement for Justice and Dignity). Public smear campaign against MADJ members Martín Fernándezand Víctor Fernández, social activists Karina Flores and Araminta Pereira, and Jesuit priest Fr. Ismael Moreno Coto (Radio Progreso).