Summary of Human Rights Issues and Events in Honduras May 2014

Please find here our latest Summary of Human Rights Issues and events in Honduras, for May 2014.

Highlights of this summary:

  • On May 28, a letter signed by 108 US Congress members was sent to Secretary of State, John Kerry, calling on the State Department to evaluate US support and training for the Honduran police and military and raised concern about policies ‘that threaten to make the human rights situation even worse’ by promoting the militarization of public security.

  • There is deep concern about increase in killings of children and young people in Honduras.

  • Casa Alianza director José Guadalupe Ruelas was the victim of an attack, due to his outspoken criticism of the state for its complicity in some of the killings of children and young people.

  • The case of Triunfo de la Cruz was heard at the Inter-American Court on May 21. The judgment will probably be issued in October or November.

  • Threats against members of the Tolupan indigenous community of Locomapa, Yoro continue in response to their peaceful opposition to illegal logging and antimony mining.

  • There are two more mining projects planned for the Siria Valley area, and a total of 200 fully operation (as opposed to exploration) concessions already granted in the country. These concessions have resulted in an increase in protests.

  • The IACHR issued a statement condemning the May 4 murder of Orlando Orellana, the president of the patronato (community council) of Cerrito Lindo in San Pedro Sula. The IACHR has issued precautionary measures for Orellana.

  • On May 8, the IACHR granted precautionary measures to 123 leaders of campesino movements in the Bajo Aguán.

  • On May 21, 315 soldiers and policemen and approximately 40 private security officers took part in the forced eviction of a total of 300 families in two MARCA campesino communities in the Bajo Aguán.

  • The Voice of Zacate Grande has been assigned a radio frequency under the new Telecommunications law that will considerably expand its coverage. However, threats continue: since the Voice of Zacate Grande was established, ADEPZA estimates that 90 of its members have been charged with offenses and 45 have received death threats. The IACHR granted precautionary measures in April 2011.

  • In mid-May, representatives of the LGBTI community met the new National Human Rights Commissioner (CONADEH) to demand the promotion of respect for their human rights, particularly the right to life, and a halt to hate crimes.

  • On May 27, the family of Ebed Yanes, one of the most notable victims of the militarization of police functions, held a demonstration outside the Supreme Court, demanding justice on the second anniversary of his death.

  • While the U.S and Honduran governments emphasize militarization, the UN Development program hailed Nicaragua’s system for citizen security – which authorities describe as ‘preventive, community-based and proactive’ – an ‘exportable model.’

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