HSN Elections Action Alert: Denounce Intimidation and Harassment of International Observers and LIBRE party members

SOAW: HSN elections Action Alert: Denounce Intimidation and Harassment of International Observers and LIBRE party members

In the last two days, HSN election observers have either experienced or confirmed the following:migration visit 003

  • Over 30 Military Police wearing ski masks attempted to forcibly enter a LIBRE party office in Tegucigalpa.
  • On multiple occasions, agents identifying themselves as workers of the Honduran Immigration Service, have harassed international election observers, tracked them down at their hotels or training centers to confirm that their documentation is in order. In some cases, this has occurred soon after these same observers have received official observer training from the Supreme Electoral Tribunal. In one instance, the “agents” were armed and wearing ski masks.

Please contact US and Honduran authorities to denounce these actions that continue to generate a climate of fear and intimidation before tomorrow’s vote.
Below you will find draft messages in English and Spanish to send:

To the US officials:
State Department, Director of Central America affairs-
Scott Hamilton: Hamiltonsi@state.gov

State Department, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor-
Charles O Blaha: Blahaco@state.gov

Honduras Embassy, Human Rights Attache-
Amanda Johnson-Miller: johnson-millera@state.gov

Dear Mr. Hamilton, Mr. O Blaha and Ms. Johnson-Miller:
I am writing to express concern about the attempt by over 30 members of the military police to forcibly enter into the LIBRE offices in the Kennedy Neighborhood of Tegucigalpa on the night of November 22nd.
I’m also writing to express concern about repeated instances of harassment of international election observers by persons identifying themselves as Honduran Government Immigration Service Agents on 22nd and 23rd.

  • On November 22nd, four people identifying themselves as Honduran Immigration agents, arrived at the offices of ERIC-SJ (Equipo de Reflexión Investigación y Comunicación – Honduras) , asking to see members of the HSN/AGJ delegation of international observers in Honduras for national elections this Sunday.
  • Later on November 22nd, the same group of agents disrupted an election observer training of the HSN/AGJ delegation at the La Fragua retreat center in Progreso, Honduras. Without prior warning, the officials intimidated observers by demanding to see everyone’s passports and observer credentials.
  • Today, November 23rd, at Hotel Suites Aurora in Tegucigalpa, several persons some armed and dressed as civilians with ski masks and others wearing Immigration Authority t-shirts came to the hotel reception asking for passports for the people in the lobby, as well as asking for all International Observers to come to the lobby. They proceeded to ask the observers questions, look through their passports and, in some instances, took personal records.

I call on you as US State Department officials to express concern to the appropriate Honduran authorities. These actions do not contribute to the climate necessary for the Honduran people to express their right to vote without fear or intimidation. Please keep me posted of any actions you take and responses from your Honduran counterparts.

I will continue to follow the activities on the ground in Honduras closely.

Sincerely,

======

Please contact the following Honduran Authorities
Ministro de Seguridad, Arturo Corrales:
Email: oaseguridad@hotmail.com
Phone: 011-504.2220.5547

Ministra de Justicia y Derechos Humanos, Ana Pineda:
Email: apineda@sjdh.gob.hn
Phone: 011-(504) 9982-6801

Estimada Sra. Pineda y Estimado Sr. Corrales :

Les escribo para expresar mi preocupación por el intento de mas de 30 miembros de la policía militar de entrar forzosamente en la sede del partido LIBRE en la Colonia Kennedy de Tegucigalpa en la noche del 22 de Noviembre.

Tambien, les escribo para expresar mi preocupación por varios incidentes los días 22 y 23 de Noviembre de hostigamiento de observadores internacionales por personas identificándose como agentes del servicio de migración del Gobierno de Honduras.

· El 22 de noviembre alrededor de las 7:00 de la noche, cuatro agentes de la Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería del departamento de Yoro, ingresaron a uno de los salones del Centro de Capacitación La Fragua que forma parte de las instalaciones del Equipo de Reflexión Investigación y Comunicación (ERIC) de la Compañía de Jesús ubicado en la ciudad de El Progreso, Yoro. Los agentes irrumpieron en el local y procedieron a requerir las acreditaciones que les otorgó el Tribunal Supremo Electoral (TSE) a unas cien personas.

· Hoy, 23 de Noviembre, en el Hotel Suites Aurora de Tegucigalpa, 6 personas vestidos de civiles, armadas y con pasamontañas, junto con 3 personas con camisetas de la Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería, llegaron a la recepción del hotel, pidiendo que tod@s los observadores internacionales se presentaran para revisar su documentación y hacerles preguntas.

Obviamente, estas acciones no están consistentes con el compromiso de su gobierno de conducir el proceso electoral en un ambiente libre de intimidación y miedo. Espero que ustedes actúen para parar este tipo de actividad inmediatamente. Seguimos pendiente de la situación en Honduras.

Atentamente,

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