Join Hondurans in taking action this week to call for an end to US financing of the illegitimate regime in Honduras!
January 20, 2018
This morning marks the start of a week-long National Strike in Honduras in protest of the January 27th swearing in of Juan Orlando Hernandez for a second presidential term despite fraudulent elections. In the weeks leading up to this National Strike, there has been a marked increase in targeted repression of protest leaders, human rights defenders, and journalists. SOA Watch condemns the ongoing brutal counterinsurgency tactics carried out by the US-trained and financed state security forces aimed at creating terror in an attempt to break the legitimate opposition of the Honduran people to the imposition of a US-backed dictator.
Over 30 people have been murdered, many of whom were killed by the Military Police or other state security forces who fired live bullets at protesters, and hundreds of others have been injured or tortured. According to human rights organization COFADEH (Committee of Relatives of the Disappeared in Honduras), over one thousand people have been detained and many are facing criminal charges aimed at silencing dissent. Others have been victims of torture or have had to flee for their lives. Security forces have entered neighborhoods, setting off teargas inside homes with children present, and seizing adults for arbitrary arrests. Jesuit priest Father Melo has received death threats and he and other social movement leaders have been the subject of vicious defamation campaigns. Lawyers Victor and Martin Fernandez, leaders of the Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice, have been targeted after speaking out about the January 1 death squad-style execution of Wilmer Paredes, an anti-fraud protest leader in the Atlántida region who had also been tortured and beaten by state security forces. On Tuesday, 50 state agents surrounded the home of Francisco Godinez, coordinator of the campesino organization CNTC, to try to arrest him. Journalists covering the protests have been attacked and had their equipment destroyed. The list of horrific repression goes on and on.
It is in this context that hundreds of thousands of Hondurans are taking to the streets all across the country today in direct action to refuse to recognize the imposition of Juan Orlando Hernandez. If not for the US support and recognition of Hernandez, it is doubtful that his regime would be able to survive the massive popular outcry. Both through support of the regime and training and financing of the security forces, the US is directly responsible for the bloodbath taking place in Honduras.
TAKE ACTION! Join a protest, organize an event, visit your congressperson, or speak out on social media in solidarity with the people of Honduras and against continued US financing of the murderous Honduran regime.
1. Speak out on social media!
2. Call the US Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask for your Senators and Representative. (You can find your Representative here and Senators here).
Sample script: I am calling to ask you to do everything you can to cut US financing of the brutal Honduran regime, which is murdering pro-democracy protesters and targeting journalists and human rights leaders. Over 30 people have been murdered, many of whom were killed when the Military Police fired live bullets at protesters, and hundreds of others have been injured or tortured, including with electric shocks. According to Honduran human rights organizations, over one thousand people have been detained and many are facing criminal charges aimed at silencing dissent. Others have been victims of torture or had to flee for their lives. Security forces have entered neighborhoods, setting off teargas inside homes with children present, and seizing adults for arbitrary arrests. Prominent human rights and social movement leaders have been targeted with threats and defamation. Even the OAS recognized electoral fraud in the recent elections, but the US State Department is supporting Juan Orlando Hernandez’s violent attempt to hold onto power for a constitutionally-prohibited second term. I ask you to speak out against the brutal state repression of pro-democracy protesters in Honduras and do everything you can to suspend US aid to the Honduran regime.
(If your Representative has not yet sponsored HR 1299, the Berta Caceres Human Rights in Honduras Act, which would suspend US security aid, please ask him/her to do so. You can see a find a list of representatives who have sponsored here.)
3. Join a protest, or organize an event in your community!