Wendy Cruz of La Via Campesina speaks about the challenges facing Honduran women and women of the peasant movement ahead of the inauguration of President Xiomara Castro of the left-wing Libre party.Continue reading
The elected president of Honduras, Xiomara Castro (Libertad y Refundación, Libre), denounced this Sunday, outside the National Congress, that a dictatorship is trying to hijack the Legislative Branch in a bid not to respond to the popular mandate.
Hundreds of people continue to mobilize in the vicinity of the Parliament in defense of democracy and respect for the popular vote.
Addressing the crowds of her supporters, Castro recalled that the elections of November 2021 were to remove from power the dictatorship of the current president, Juan Orlando Hernandez, and banish its unlawful practices.
She stressed that on November 28, the people cast their votes and that their will must be respected.Continue reading
What appeared impossible has been achieved: the people of Honduras have broken the perpetuation, through electoral fraud and thuggish violence, of a brutal, illegal, illegitimate, and criminal regime.
By means of sheer resistance, resilience, mobilization, and organization, they have managed to defeat Juan Orlando Hernandez’s narco-dictatorship at the ballot box. Xiomara Castro, presidential candidate of the left-wing Libre party (the Freedom and Refoundation Party, in its Spanish acronym), obtained a splendid 50+ percent—between 15 to 20 percent more votes than her closest rival candidate, Nasry Asfura, National Party candidate, in an election with historic high levels of participation (68 percent).Continue reading
Following Xiomara Castro’s victory in the Honduran elections, Bertha Zúniga Cáceres, Coordinator, COPINH, spoke to Peoples Dispatch about what this means for people’s movements in the country. She talks about the government’s plans in its first 100 days, what movements like COPINH think are the next steps for rebuilding democracy, and more.Continue reading
Brian Nichols, Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, visited Honduras the week before the presidential elections. His stated purpose was to “encourage the peaceful, transparent conduct of free and fair national elections.” He did not meet with the de facto President, Juan Orlando Hernández.
The gesture was clear and illuminating on two levels.
First, it showed that the U.S. government had already accepted the irrefutable truth that the center-left coalition led by Xiomara Castro would earn the votes of the Honduran people (as we go to publication, she was in the lead with 53.6%). Honduras’ 5.1 million voters would also elect three vice-presidents, 298 mayors, 128 deputies to the national legislature, and 20 to the Central American Parliament.Continue reading
Castro’s victory is just the latest in a year of leftist victories in Latin America, including Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua, Pedro Castillo in Peru, and Luis Arce in Bolivia, all of which represent significant setbacks for the US’ agenda in the region.
“There will be no more abuse of power in this country,” Castro said in an unofficial victory speech on Sunday. “Today, the people have made justice. We have reversed authoritarianism.”
With 40% of votes counted, she held a commanding lead of 53.3% over her chief rival, National Party candidate Nasry Asfura, who Sputnik News journalist Wyatt Reed described as the “handpicked successor to Juan Orlando Hernandez,” the right-wing president whose two election victories were widely marred by fraud.Continue reading
Leading over Nasry Asfura, current mayor of the capital city Tegucigulpa and PAN candidate, as well as Yani Rosenthal, candidate for the Liberal Party, Castro is on track to become the first woman president of the Central American nation, and the first leftist leader of the country since her husband Manuel ‘Mel’ Zelaya was ousted in a U.S.-backed coup in 2009.
With 16.01% of the votes vounted, representing nearly 3 million total votes, the Libre Party victor has secured 53.44% of the vote, whereas Asfura obtained 34.01% and Rosenthal 9.23%, whereas other candidates picked up the remaining 4%.
Still to be announced by Honduras’ National Electoral Council (CNE) is the breakdown of the vote for the 20 representatives to the Central American Parliament, 128 representatives to the National Congress, and the local leaders of 298 municipal corporations, which will be announced in the coming hours.Continue reading
On November 28, more than 5 million Hondurans will be asked to elect the President of the Republic, 128 deputies to the National Congress, 20 to the Central American Parliament, 298 mayors and more than 2 thousand municipal councillors.
As the election date approaches, the political atmosphere has become polarized, conflict has intensified and social tension grown.
No one has forgotten the violent repression of 2017 against those who protested against the gross electoral fraud that prolonged the agony of the current government regime. At that time, more than thirty people lost their lives violently and these crimes have remained in total impunity.Continue reading
On Sunday, November 28, 5.5 million Hondurans will participate in the general elections to elect the president, 128 deputies to the National Congress, 298 mayors, and 20 deputies to the Central American Parliament. The electoral process has been strongly criticized by members of the opposition and human rights organizations inside and outside Honduras due to the serious violation of the basic rights of the political opposition and the right of the people to a peaceful and legal electoral process.Continue reading
Twelve years have passed since the fateful 2009 coup in Honduras by the oligarchy, private companies and the leaders of the Catholic and evangelical churches. How can you forget Cardinal Oscar Andrés Rodríguez supporting the coup and asking the constitutional president of Honduras, Manual Zelaya Rosales, not to return to Honduras, his own country, in which he was democratically elected by the people?
We cannot and should never forget that the coup was supported by the U.S. government, at that time headed by Democratic President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
This crime against humanity is responsible for the deepening of the crisis and social, economic, and political chaos in which Honduras has found itself ever since.Continue reading
A wide range of sectors in Honduras are continuing to mobilize against the Economic Development and Employment Zones (ZEDEs) with the general election now one month away. Campesino, indigenous and Afro-descendant movements and communities say the large scale territorial concessions amount to a flagrant violation of national sovereignty and will result in mass displacement. Frequent protests against the legislation, like the one held by the National Lawyers Association of Honduras, have called for the repeal of Decree 120/2013, due to its unconstitutionality, and communities are declaring their lands ZEDES free territories. Despite strong opposition, the Honduran state continues to make concessions to transnational capital, surrendering not only land, but also political sovereignty to foreign companies.Continue reading
On this Indigenous Peoples’ Day, I want to tell you about my people, the Garifuna. We’re an Afro-Indigenous people, descended from Arawaks and Africans. Our ancestral territory spans the Caribbean border of Central America.
Latin American and Caribbean communities like ours are rarely noticed in U.S. media — except when we migrate.
In summer 2021, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris came to Central America and told would-be migrants: “Do not come .” More recently, photos of U.S. Border Patrol agents whipping Haitian refugees in the Texas desert brutally drove that message home.
This anti-migrant message is dehumanizing and wrong. But the truth is, many of us would love nothing more than to stay in our homes. It’s Washington that’s making it difficult.Continue reading
Chilean author and human rights advocate Ariel Dorfman recently memorialized Orlando Letelier, President Allende’s foreign minister. Agents of dictator Augusto Pinochet murdered Letelier in Washington in 1976. Dorfman noted that Chile and the United States were “on excellent, indeed obscenely excellent, terms (like they are today, shamefully, between the United States and the corrupt regime in Honduras).”
The Honduran government headed by president Juan Orlando Hernández does have excellent relations with the United States. The alliance is toxic, however, what with the continued hold of capitalism on an already unjust, dysfunctional society. Hondurans will choose a new president on November 28.Continue reading
Currently in Honduras, medical anthropologist Adrienne Pine is closely involved with the Espinal and Álvarez trial.
Pine said today: “This Monday and Tuesday, former political prisoners Edwin Espinal and Raúl Álvarez will go on trial in Honduras on trumped-up charges related to their participation in protests during the 2017 Honduran electoral crisis.
“Protests had erupted nationwide after the blatant theft of the November 2017 presidential elections by Juan Orlando Hernández, who had previously orchestrated an illegal takeover of the country’s Supreme Court in order to obtain permission to run for a consecutive second term, in violation of the Honduran constitution. State security forces shot into crowds.Continue reading
Of the countries in Central America’s “northern triangle,” Honduras is the one that sends the most migrants to the United States. Already this year over 32,000 Honduran migrants have been deported from the United States, including more than 2,600 children. The country’s president, Juan Orlando Hernández (JOH), was supported by President Trump because he is a strongman willing to forcibly stop Honduran migrants from leaving the country. He even signed a misnamed “safe country” agreement implying that Honduras was a haven for asylum seekers. In return, Trump was willing to acquiesce in JOH’s disastrous domestic policies even though they are one of the main drivers for migrants to leave.Continue reading