No end to the wave of assassinations, torture and disappeared in Honduras
By Giorgio Trucchi – REL-UITA
While North American diplomacy increases pressure to normalize the situation of Honduras at the international level and reinsert it into the OAS, the organized campesinos in Lower Aguan continue to fall to the murderous bullets of the paramilitary groups that enjoy total impunity and in the face of the complicit silence of the authorities of a failed State.
This morning, May 18th, Sixto Ramos, a member of the Nueva Suyapa Cooperative of the Campesino Movement of Aguan (MCA) was assassinated. Sixto was 45 years old. According to the initial reconstruction of the events, Ramos was driving his vehicle to work when it was intercepted by unknown persons in another car and they attacked with gunfire, ending his life.
“In the Lower Aguan the repression continues against us, people who are supporting the process of struggle for access to the land”, José Santos Cruz, member of the MCA and of the International Mission that in March, 2011 investigated the human rights situation in Lower Aguan, told Sirel.
“Sixto Ramos was a partner of the Nueva Suyapa cooperative and has always supported the process of struggle of the MCA. We feel that this new assassination is directly linked with the conflict that our organization has with the big land owners and palm oil producers in the zone”, said Cruz.
Last week campesinos José Paulino Lemus Cruz and Henry Roney Díaz, members of the MCA and of MARCA respectively were brutally murdered.
On May 10th, Alejandro Gomez, a member of the cooperative La Trinidad of MARCA was kidnapped by private guards employed by the big land owners in the zone, savagely interrogated and tortures for almost three days and finally set free. He is currently in hiding for fear of being assassinated.
On May 15th, the campesino Francisco Pascual Lopez, 38 years old was disappeared. According to the information that is available, some people who were walking with him heard gunfire. When they arrived at the spot, Francisco Pascual had disappeared.
With the violent death of Sixto Ramos the number of members of campesino organization assassinated in the last 15 months rises to 28. None-the-less at the international level the pressure to reinstate Honduras into the Organization of American States is growing.
“They have not been able to defeat us with the massive militarization of the Army and the Police and now they are attacking us in a selective manner. They want to diminish our ranks by assassinating us one by one. For the MCA, we are meeting to take the necessary measures because we are not going to just continue denouncing the crimes.
The government trys to present a false image of Honduras. The country is not pacified and the people continue to die. It would be lamentable to ignore so many cadavers and human rights violations. The conditions for Honduras to return to the OAS do not exist”, concluded Cruz.