The seizure of a seven-page list of recognized Honduran popular leaders from two plainclothes police agents on the campus of the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) this month has suggested that key defenders of human and labor rights may be targeted for persecution.
The seizure of a seven-page list of recognized Honduran popular leaders from two plainclothes police agents on the campus of the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) this month has suggested that key defenders of human and labor rights may be targeted for persecution. WOLA urges the Honduran government to guarantee the safety of the people on the list and the employees of their organizations.
After infiltrating an internal meeting of the university’s union, the two men in plainclothes, both identified as members of the Honduran National Police, were apprehended by campus security as they followed the president of the UNAH union, René Andino. The incident occurred on September 10.
Security from the UNAH who detained the two men seized a seven-page list containing the names of 135 recognized leaders from various sectors of civil society including indigenous leaders, laborers, parliament members, journalists and clergy. Many of the organizations on the list had been named by government officials as “dangerous” and were marked for “tracking” and” vigilance.”
Among the individuals and organizations named on the list are ASONOG (Associación de Organizaciones No Gubernamentales, Association of Nongovernmental Agencies), FOSDEH (Fondo Social de la Deuda Externa de Honduras, Social Fund for External Debt in Honduras), ACD (Alianza Cíivica por la Democracia, Civil Alliance for Democracy), Mauricio Díaz (FOSDEH), Archbishop Luis Alfonso Santos (ACD), Francisco Machado (ASONOG), Gladis Lanza (member of the Governing Board of FOSDEH), and Marvin Ponce (from COCOCH, and Congressperson from the UD party, as well as member of the Governing Board of FOSDEH). Many of these organizations are long-time WOLA partners on human rights and other issues in Honduras.
WOLA finds it disturbing that in a period of severe social and economic crises, the Honduran government would target and persecute defenders of human rights. WOLA calls on the Minister of Security, Jorge Rodas Gamero, to fully investigate and clarify this incident and hold accountable those responsible.
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