Month: March 2016

Finding Irregularities, NLG Delegation Calls for Independent Investigation into the Murder of Honduran Activist, Berta Cáceres

For immediate release:

March 28, 2016

Contact: Natasha Lycia Ora Bannan
NLG President
president@nlg.org
212-739-7583

NEW YORK—The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) denounces the March 2 killing of leading indigenous and environmental activist Berta Cáceres and the investigation by Honduran authorities that followed. A March 8-15 NLG delegation to Honduras met with various Honduran and U.S. government officials, community members, and the Cáceres family to probe the circumstances surrounding her murder and the ensuing investigation. It issued its report today.

In 2015, Cáceres received the Goldman Environmental Prize for her courageous and tireless work advocating for indigenous and marginalized communities. She drew ire for her leadership in the peaceful resistance against the Agua Zarca dam project in Rio Blanco, one of many development projects threatening dispossession of indigenous communities.In 2015, Cáceres received the Goldman Environmental Prize for her courageous and tireless work advocating for indigenous and marginalized communities. She drew ire for her leadership in the peaceful resistance against the Agua Zarca dam project in Rio Blanco, one of many development projects threatening dispossession of indigenous communities.

Cáceres’ family and other groups have condemned irregularities in the investigation, including the government’s refusal to honor requests for an independent autopsy; the initial rush to judgment that the killing was a crime of passion; and the refusal to allow Gustavo Castro Soto, a victim and sole witness who was injured in the attack, to return to his home in Mexico. Neither the NLG nor the family believes that the government that failed to protect Cáceres, and whose legal institutions are notoriously corrupt, can be trusted to find her killer.

Based on the delegation’s findings, the NLG echoes the growing demands for the U.S. to support an independent, impartial, international investigation by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights that leads to prosecution of both the material and intellectual authors of the murder. The NLG also urges the U.S. to suspend security assistance until Honduras has shown through concrete action and results that it respects human rights, protects human rights defenders, and upholds the rule of law. The NLG also calls for the U.S. to permanently end development aid (including direct aid and funds disbursed through multilateral development banks) that supports projects that were undertaken in violation of the right to free, informed consent of the indigenous people whose territory they affect.

Without urgent, pointed, and effective action by both the United States and the broader international community, which provide funding to the Honduran government, Honduras will likely continue its massive violation of the rights and the lives of its indigenous communities.

The National Lawyers Guild was formed in 1937 as the nation’s first racially integrated bar association to advocate for the protection of constitutional, human and civil rights.

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A Voice for Honduras’ Voiceless

The Lasting Legacy of Berta Cáceres By Lauren Carasik (for a PDF click here: A Voice for Honduras’ Voiceless) https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/honduras/2016-03-22/voice-honduras-voiceless Honduras is reeling from the assassination of prominent indigenous rights activist and environmental leader Berta Cáceres, who was gunned down in her home in La Esperanza on … Continue reading A Voice for Honduras’ Voiceless

Indigenous Rights Under Attack: Canadian economic and political interests over human rights

No one defending their land and territory in Honduras is safe. That was the message that rang loud and clear after Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home on March 3. Cáceres, an Indigenous Lenca wo…

Source: Indigenous Rights Under Attack: Canadian economic and political interests over human rights

El Asesinato de Berta Cáceres, el Derecho a la Consulta, y los Bancos FMO, BCIE y FinnFund

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Sambo Creek, 10 de marzo de 2016.- El asesinato de la dirigente Lenca Berta Cáceres, acontecido el pasado tres de marzo en su casa de habitación en La Esperanza, Intibuca, saca a relucir los enormes peligros que corren las personas que se dedican a la defensa del medio ambiente y los pueblos indígenas en los países que vienen siendo recolonizados por el neoliberalismo.

La incansable lucha para proteger el río Gualcarque, entre otros, que libró Berta, sirvió para que muchos hondureños sumidos en la desinformación se enteraran como después del golpe de estado el 2009, la élite político empresarial del país a instancias de organismos internacionales se dividieron las cuencas hidrográficas en Honduras con el supuesto propósito de producir energía limpia.

La farsa de la energía “limpia” producida  a través de la muerte de los ríos, se ha convertido en uno de los negocios más lucrativos para las minúsculas elites…

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