Tag Archives: Honduras human rights

Urgent Hurricane Solidarity with the Honduran People

The Honduras Solidarity Network is collecting donations for Hurricane Eta solidarity with the grassroots and community organizations directly working in rescue, food, shelter and transportation relief to thousands of people affected by the flooding. 100% of money collected goes to solidarity.

Please follow this link to read more and to donate.



STOP the Campaign of Terror Against Honduras’ Garifuna People

Honduras Solidarity Network in the US and Canada – August 24, 2020

On July 18th, Snider Centeno, Suami Mejia, Milton Martinez and Gerardo Rochez all young Afro-Indigenous Garifuna land defenders and another person were forcibly disappeared from the town of Triunfo de la Cruz in Honduras.  For more than a month the defenders’ community and organization, OFRANEH (Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras), have denounced and protested the disappearances, the continued attacks on the Garifuna communities and the government’s biased and incomplete investigation. International voices have also been raised in defense of the Indigenous land defenders, including protests by Garifuna organizations in the US.and other countries. The Inter-American Human Rights Court reiterated its previous ruling in favor of the Garifuna communities and insisted that the Honduran regime comply with the ruling, and the United Nations has called on the Honduran government to take urgent actions to find the men.

The Honduran regime has repressed and threatened the communities and the police force conducting the investigation into the kidnapping  is the Bureau of Police Investigation  known as the DPI (Spanish acronym), but the DPI itself is implicated in these forced disappearances since the armed kidnappers were wearing police issue bullet proof vests marked as DPI. 

The community Triunfo de la Cruz is emblematic of the ongoing Garifuna people’s struggle to defend their territories against seizure by the government and both Honduran and international developers  as well as organized crime with ties to both. All of them seek to exploit the coastal resources and displace the Garifuna people. In 2015 the Inter-American Human Rights Court (IACHR) ruled in favor of Triunfo de la Cruz  and Punta Piedra communities against the Honduran government. The IACHR ordered the Honduran State to make reparations for the harm they committed against Garifuna communities, to return the stolen land, to end impunity for the crimes committed against these communities throughout the decades of the 80’s and 90’s. However, the government has ignored the court’s orders.  In fact, violence and attempts to displace the Garifuna people have intensified. In 2019 alone, at least 19 Garifuna were murdered. In June, 2020 Antonio Bernandez, a leader in the community of Punta Piedra was assassinated. Now, five more people, 4 of them Garifuna leaders, have been disappeared. 

As pressure on the Honduran dictatorship over the forced disappearances has grown, a vicious smear campaign was launched against the disappeared men, and their communities and organization, using fake photo montages and social media to accuse the men of being  part of organized crime. This tactic has been used  time and time again by the Honduran narco government to cover up for the murders and disappearances of all the assassinated Garifuna activists, and to unjustly jail and harass community leaders. It is especially outrageous  given that the de facto President of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez, has been named a co-conspirator by the New York prosecutors in the case of  his brother Tony who was convicted of narcotics trafficking; prosecutors are pursuing charges against many others in his government circles. 

The Honduras Solidarity Network stands in  support of OFRANEH  and the Garifuna communities in Honduras against the campaign by the Honduran regime and unscrupulous developers to displace the Garifuna and turn their territories into mono-culture agriculture, tourist resorts and extractive projects.  

We Join the Garifuna Communities in Demanding: 

  • The return of the disappeared men alive. 
  • A serious and impartial investigation that does not include the DPI  into the disappearance of the 5 men from Triunfo de la Cruz. 
  • Compliance with the orders of the Inter-American Human Rights Court for justice for Triunfo de la Cruz and Punta Piedra
  • An end to all attempts to displace Garifuna communities and all the violence and harassment against communities and organizations

We demand that the governments of the US and Canada end all support for the regime of Juan Orlando Hernandez and insist on compliance with the Inter-American Human RIghts Court  ruling in favor of the Garifuna communities. 

Inter-American Human Rights Court original press statement Spanish


Twitter: @hondurasol


 10 Years After the Coup

June 28, 2009 – June 28, 2019

Declaracion en espa~nol

Statement from the Honduras Solidarity Network

Right now, Hondurans in the cities and countryside are still in nonviolent resistance to the continuation of the June 28, 2009, coup. Under the regime of Juan Orlando Hernández, the economic and political crisis has deepened. Since the coup poverty has increased by at least 10%, schools have been closed and the health care system nearly destroyed by outright theft of public funds and privatization. Violence by government security forces and death squad type groups have killed hundreds since 2009 and that political violence has increased again since the 2017 election fraud, when the current president Hernández was re-elected against the constitution and Honduran democracy. Criminal violence has also increased with the destruction of the rule of law and the growth of a narco-state. 

On June 28, 2009: Only hours before a scheduled non-binding national referendum on beginning the process of a constituent assembly to rewrite the Honduran Constitution, a coup d’etat, led by the right-wing Honduran oligarchy, its ultra-conservative, corrupt politicians, and the military command, sent  the military and police to arrest elected President Manuel Zelaya Rosales. Zelaya had moved away from dependency on the US economically and militarily, and aligned himself with progressive governments in South America. He implemented or proposed reforms to the minimum wage, access to land for small farmers, women’s reproductive rights and LGBTQ rights.  The United States under President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton refused to support the restoration of President Zelaya and democracy in Honduras. Since then, the main economic and political support for the continuing dictatorship is from the US government, the Canadian Government and business interests. 

In May, protests became bigger across Honduras in reaction to a new law that would have further decimated the public education and public health sectors. Teachers unions and Health Care unions began national strikes that were then supported by the majority of Honduran people and other organizations. At this time, there has been more than 40 days of non-violent massive protests and road takeovers, as well as civil dialogue assemblies defending public health and education and demanding that Juan Orlando and his regime leave power. Protests continue despite a violent repression from police and military with at least 5 people killed since May. 

It is no surprise that the economic and political crisis in Honduras means that migration has turned into a flow of refugees fleeing an unlivable situation. The reaction of the U.S. government and the Honduran government has been to blame the refugees, to accuse humanitarian and journalist accompaniment of being “traffickers”, to increase border militarization and try to make the problem belong to Mexico, Guatemala or El Salvador. The US is blatantly violating its own regulations, as well as international law in its separation of families, child detentions, negation of legal and human rights  and ongoing violence against migrants and refugees. As long as the crisis continues in Honduras, refugees will flee. 

The Honduras Solidarity Network in North America was founded almost 10 years ago in order to articulate actions in solidarity with Hondurans resisting interventionist policies in defense of life and its sovereignty. Today, 30 organizations from the United States and Canada stand with the Honduran people in demanding that the US and Canada stop supporting dictatorship and militarization in Honduras.


En Defensa del Padre Melo – In Defense of Father Ismael ‘Melo” Moreno

En español aquí

Statement by the Honduras Solidarity Network of North America

Our network emphatically rejects the recent accusations against Padre Ismael “Melo” Moreno made by the Rector of the National Autonomous University Julieta Castellanos on July 25, 2017 in which she accused the Padre and members of the Jesuit organizations in Honduras, as well as members of electoral opposition parties LIBRE and PINU of being responsible for the current crisis at the UNAH and of “fomenting anarchy”.

Members of the HSN are very familiar with the work of Padre Melo, Radio Progreso and ERIC-SJ over many years. That work has always been to understand the problems and needs of the majority of Hondurans, to give them a place in which to express themselves, and to advocate for solutions that would strengthen democracy and end conflict and violence – not foment it.

Ms. Castellanos’ assertions that Padre Melo is responsible for the crises and violence in the University is not only absurd but dangerous. It is part of a campaign to discredit critics of the Honduran regime and its officials; it seeks to intimidate free speech and political opposition and puts these defenders and communicators at risk for their lives. There is a pattern of such accusations by government officials and friends of the regime against Honduran and international DDHH groups and against Hondurans . Other well known targets of these inflammatory accusations have included Berta Caceres of COPINH (assassinated in 2016) and recently her daughters, as well as Berta Oliva of COFADEH. In Honduras, where impunity and human rights violations are endemic, these kinds of accusations are in fact threats and put the named defenders at a clear risk for physical violence, and even death.

Calls for the Rector and government to dialogue in good faith with the students, to comply with previous agreements with the students, and to end the criminalization and state repression against the student movement are necessary and legitimate activities for human rights defenders and for Honduran society.

We also are watching, with profound concern, the violence against the students. We condemn the selective assassinations of students and their family members, and the militarization of university campuses around the country that has been ongoing for many months. We have not forgotten the assassinations of other student activists in recent years such as 14 year old Soad Nicole Ham Bustillo, murdered in March of 2015 after denouncing President Hernandez on national TV.

We also condemn the general impunity for crimes against defenders of the environment, indigenous rights and land rights, of journalists and of those opposing the regime that include Berta Caceres Flores, Margarita Murillo and the hundreds more murdered since the coup in 2009.

The US and Canadian governments continue to provide substantial money, training and resources to the Honduran Security and Police apparatus. We continue to observe that this assistance only facilitates and helps to perpetuate human rights violations and state violence against the people of Honduras. This aid must be ended – or that reason we support the Berta Caceres Human Rights in Honduras Act introduced in the US Congress on March 2, 2017.

We hold the Honduran government responsible for the safety and liberty of Padre Melo and the entire team of Radio Progreso and ERIC-SJ.

Honduras Solidarity Network in North America (HSN) July 31, 2017

online references