Quixote Center: “Tell Obama to Denounce Military Violence in Honduras”
|Please email President Obama and Sec. of State Clinton and ask them to denounce the rampant violence and multiple violations of human rights by the Honduran military and police.
After three months in forced exile due a military coup d’état on June 28th that ousted him from power, President Zelaya returned to Honduras on Monday, September 21, 2009. He is camping out in the Brazilian embassy along with members of his cabinet. As thousands of people gathered in front of the embassy to welcome Zelaya back, the president of the coup government, Roberto Micheletti, threatened to cancel the embassy’s immunity if Zelaya were not handed over to the de facto government.
The power at the Brazilian embassy as well as at anti-coup media stations was cut, and the de facto government instated a curfew. Nevertheless, people remained in the streets around the Brazilian embassy. Police and military units are on the streets to enforce the curfew, which was extended twice yesterday, and will now run to 6pm tonight.
The Quixote Center delegation currently in Honduras spent Tuesday interviewing people injured and detained by the coup government during or subsequent to the violent attack on unarmed protesters in front of the Brazilian Embassy early yesterday morning. They split into two groups, visiting human rights offices, the hospital, and Chochi Sosa Stadium where many were detained. Nearly 50 of those being detained at the stadium who had been identified as being a part of the resistance showed clear signs of physical abuse. Some appeared to have broken arms and legs. Some police in the stadium were wearing ski masks, to conceal their identities. All of this abuse is happening because people are insisting on their right to be in the streets.
There have been multiple forms of resisting this imposition, with reports from dozens of neighborhoods and towns of people in the streets. Many of these actions are being repressed by the police, and reports continue coming in of more arrests and repression.
At this critical moment, when the dictator is desperate, we need to demand that our government respond immediately with more dramatic actions, in order to save lives and prevent more people from being beaten and abused. We know many of you have already been taking the actions we requested. It is imperative that you continue making your voices heard, so that our government keeps pressure on the coup leaders.