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Honduran National Resistance Update 10/16

October 16, 2009

8:00PM

 

Time Magazine asks :

 

“Is the U.S. Softening Its Opposition to the Honduran Coup?”

 


Comment:  I don’t think it ever hardened.

 

 

>UN Probe on Honduras Human Rights Violation

United Nations, Oct 16 (Prensa Latina) The United Nations (UN) will
investigate from next Monday in Honduras the human rights violations
committed there since the coup last June 28, was announced Friday
here.

 

The investigation will be in charge of a mission that responds to the
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay and it will work
in Honduras until next November 7, added an official information
distributed in this headquarter.

The team work responds to the stipulated by the resolution adopted
last October 1 by the Council of the Human Rights.

In order to achieve its mandate, the group will ask for information
to every present interlocutor in that country “as the General
Assembly’s resolution of last June 30 engaged”, added the document
that also condemn the coup, which interrupted the democratic order
and the legitimate exercise of the power in Honduras.

It also condemned the ousting of President José Manuel Zelaya,
elected democratically, and demanded the immediate and unconditional
restoration of the constitutional government.

The document also made a call to every State to don’t admit any other
regime different to Zelaya’s regime, and expressed its support to the
regional efforts in order to resolve the political crisis in
Honduras.

ef cgm vc

 

 

 

3:00PM

 

>Article from Cuba Debate: ALBA is looking at possible blockade against Honduras if there is no agreement (in Spanish).

 

>Honduran Ambassador in Brazil Asks for Election Monitors

October 15th, 2009

 The Honduran Ambassador in Brazil, Victor Manuel Lozano Urbina, has met with and asked the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Brazil’s President, to help monitor the November 29th elections in Honduras. He has agreed and will be sending a team to Honduras in November to fulfill that purpose.

 

>Article from Honduras Coup 2009: Honduran Congressional Opinion, Part 2

Excerpt:
There have been persistent claims that the decisions taken June 28, to illegally remove
from office the constitutionally elected President, Jose Manuel Zelaya, and replace him
with the head of Congress, were unanimous decisions of the Honduran Congress.

From the very first day, these claims have been falsified by statements by Honduran
Congressional diputados, starting with the open letter by Edmundo Orellana in which
he withdraw from participation in the post-coup Congress.

 

>British Trade Union Congress (TUC) calls for tough action on Honduras

Friday, 16 October 2009

The Trades Union Congress (TUC), the national federation of trade unions in Britian representing nearly 7 million workers is callign for tough action from the European Commission to support the Honuran peole.

 

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: “Since the military coup in Honduras, opponents of the regime have been assaulted, raped and killed.

 

“Despite these appalling human rights abuses, the European Union continues to give the regime legitimacy through preferential trade rights.

 

“Rather than standing idly by the international community must put political and economic pressure on the regime to end its human rights abuses and restore the democratically elected Government.”

 

A full press release is below.

 

The TUC is today (Wednesday) calling on the European Commission to suspend its preferential trade agreement with Honduras because of repeated human rights abuses since the military regime overthrew the democratically elected government earlier this year.

 

Since the military coup on 28 June 2009, 20 people have been killed (12 of whom were trade unionists), while another 500 people have been injured and 3,000 arrested. Honduran trade unions have reported their members being subjected to physical and psychological torture, including rape.

 

Last month the TUC wrote to European Commissioner Baroness Catherine Ashton calling on the European Commission to suspend its GSP+ trade agreement with Honduras.

 

Under its Generalised System of Preferences or ‘GSP+’ scheme, the European Union rewards countries that are implementing fundamental human and labour rights conventions with additional trade preferences.

 

The TUC believes the Honduran regime has violated several UN and ILO human and workers’ rights conventions including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention against Torture and the ILO conventions concerning Freedom of Association.

 

Despite acknowledging concerns about the military regime, the European Commission has refused to withdraw GSP+ status from Honduras. In her response Baroness Ashton claimed: “We have not yet received any indication that the situation is yet affecting the implementation of the Conventions linked to GSP+”.

 

The TUC call was made ahead of the event Restore Democracy in Honduras being held in central London tonight.

 

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: “Since the military coup in Honduras, opponents of the regime have been assaulted, raped and killed.

 

“Despite these appalling human rights abuses, the European Union continues to give the regime legitimacy through preferential trade rights.

 

“Rather than standing idly by the international community must put political and economic pressure on the regime to end its human rights abuses and restore the democratically elected Government.”

 

UCU General Secretary Sally Hunt said: “Trade unionists in Honduras faced violence before the coup. But the situation today is far worse.

 

“Sadly when dictators crack down on democracies, trade unions are often the first to be targeted.

 

“We urge the European Commission to put pressure on the Honduran military regime by suspending its preferential trade agreement.” “

 

 

>Reflections by Fidel Castro: A Nobel Prize for Evo

If Obama was awarded the Nobel for winning the elections in a racist
society despite his being African American, Evo deserves it for winning
them in his country despite his being a native and his having delivered
on his promises.
    For the first time, in both countries a member of their respective
ethnic groups has won the presidency.
    I had said several times that Obama is a smart and cultivated man in
a social and political system he believes in. He wishes to bring
healthcare to nearly 50 million Americans, to rescue the economy from
its profound crisis and to improve the US image which has deteriorated
as a result of genocidal wars and torture. He neither conceives nor
wishes to change his country’s political and economic system; nor could
he do it.  
    The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to three American presidents,
one former president and one candidate to the presidency.
    The first one was Theodore Roosevelt elected in 1901. He was one of
the Rough Riders who landed in Cuba with his riders but with no horses
in the wake of the US intervention in 1898 aimed at preventing the
independence of our homeland.
    The second was Thomas Woodrow Wilson who dragged the United States
to the first war for the distribution of the world. The extremely severe
conditions he imposed on a vanquished Germany, through the Versailles
Treaty, set the foundations for the emergence of fascism and the
breakout of World War II.
    The third has been Barack Obama.
    Carter was the ex-president who received the Nobel Prize a few years
after leaving office. He was certainly one of the few presidents of that
country who would not order the murder of an adversary, as others did.
He returned the Panama Canal, opened the US Interests Section in Havana
and prevented large budget deficits as well as the squandering of money
to the benefit of the military-industrial complex, as Reagan did.
    The candidate was Al Gore –when he already was vicepresident. He was
the best informed American politician on the dreadful consequences of
climate change. As a candidate to the presidency, he was the victim of
an electoral fraud and stripped of his victory by W. Bush.
    The views have been deeply divided with regards to the choice for
this award. Many people question ethical concepts or perceive obvious
contradictions in the unexpected decision. 
    They would have rather seen the Prize given for an accomplished
task. The Nobel Peace Prize has not always been presented to people
deserving that distinction. On occasions it has been received by
resentful and arrogant persons, or even worse.  Upon hearing the news,
Lech Walesa scornfully said: “Who, Obama? It’s too soon. He has not had
time to do anything.”
    In our press and in CubaDebate, honest revolutionary comrades have
expressed their criticism. One of them wrote: “The same week in which
Obama was granted the Nobel Peace Prize, the US Senate passed the
largest military budget in its history: 626 billion dollars.” Another
journalist commented during the TV News: “What has Obama done to deserve
that award?” And still another asked: “And what about the Afghan war and
the increased number of bombings?” These views are based on reality.
    In Rome, film maker Michael Moore made a scathing
comment: “Congratulations, President Obama, for the Nobel Peace Prize;
now, please, earn it.”
    I am sure that Obama agrees with Moore’s phrase. He is clever enough
to understand the circumstances around this case. He knows he has not
earned that award yet. That day in the morning he said that he was under
the impression that he did not deserve to be in the company of so many
inspiring personalities who have been honored with that prize.
    It is said that the celebrated committee that assigns the Nobel
Peace Prize is made up of five persons who are all members of the
Swedish Parliament. A spokesman said it was a unanimous vote. One
wonders whether or not the prizewinner was consulted and if such a
decision can be made without giving him previous notice.
    The moral judgment would be different depending on whether or not he
had previous knowledge of the Prize’s allocation. The same could be said
of those who decided to present it to him.
    Perhaps it would be worthwhile creating the Nobel Transparency Prize.
    Bolivia is a country with large oil and gas depots as well as the
largest known reserves of lithium, a mineral currently in great demand
for the storage and use of energy.
    Before his sixth birthday, Evo Morales, a very poor native peasant,
walked through The Andes with his father tending the llama of his native
community. He walked with them for 15 days to the market where they were
sold in order to purchase food for the community. In response to a
question I asked him about that peculiar experience Evo told me that “he
took shelter under the one-thousand stars hotel,” a beautiful way of
describing the clear skies on the mountains where telescopes are
sometimes placed.
    In those difficult days of his childhood, the only alternative of
the peasants in his community was to cut sugarcane in the Argentinean
province of Jujuy, where part of the Aymara community went to work
during the harvesting season.
    Not far from La Higuera, where after being wounded and disarmed Che
[Guevara] was murdered on October 9, 1967, Evo –who had been born on the
26th of that same month in the year 1959—was not yet 8 years old. He
learned how to read and write in Spanish in a small public school he had
to walk to, which was located 3.2 miles away from the one-room shack he
shared with his parents and siblings.  
    During his hazardous childhood, Evo would go wherever there was a
teacher. It was from his race that he learned three ethical principles:
don’t lie, don’t steal and don’t be weak.
    At the age of 13, his father allowed him to move to San Pedro de
Oruro to study his senior high school. One of his biographers has
related that he did better in Geography, History and Philosophy than in
Physics and Mathematics.  The most important thing is that, in order to
pay for school, Evo woke up a two in the morning to work as a baker, a
construction worker or any other physical job. He attended school in the
afternoon. His classmates admired him and helped him. From his early
childhood he learned how to play wind instruments and even was a trumpet
player in a prestigious band in Oruro.
    As a teenager he organized and was the captain of his community’s
soccer team.
    But, access to the University was beyond reach for a poor Aymara
native.
    After completing his senior high school, he did military service and
then returned to his community on the mountain tops. Later, poverty and
natural disasters forced the family to migrate to the subtropical area
known as El Chapare, where they managed to have a plot of ground. His
father passed away in 1983, when he was 23 years old. He worked hard on
the ground but he was a born fighter; he organized the workers and
created trade unions thus filling up a space unattended by the
government.   
    The conditions for a social revolution in Bolivia had been maturing
in the past 50 years. The revolution broke out in that country with
Victor Paz Estensoro’s Nationalist Revolutionary Movement (MNR, by its
Spanish acronym) on April 9, 1952, that is, before the start of our
armed struggle. The revolutionary miners defeated the repressive forces
and the MNR seized power.
    The revolutionary objectives in Bolivia were not attained and in
1956, according to some well-informed people, the process started to
decline. On January 1st, 1959, the Revolution triumphed in Cuba, and
three years later, in January 1962, our homeland was expelled from the
OAS. Bolivia abstained from voting. Later, every other government,
except Mexico’s, severed relations with Cuba.
    The divisions in the international revolutionary movement had an
impact on Bolivia. Time would have to pass with over 40 years of
blockade on Cuba; neoliberalism and its devastating consequences; the
Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela and the ALBA; and above all, Evo and
his MAS in Bolivia.
    It would be hard to try summing up his rich history in a few pages.
    I shall only say that Evo has prevailed over the wicked and
slanderous imperialist campaigns, its coups and interference in the
internal affairs of that country and defended Bolivia’s sovereignty and
the right of its thousand-year-old people to have their traditions
respected. “Coca is not cocaine,” he blurted out to the largest
marihuana producer and drug consumer in the world, whose market has
sustained the organized crime that is taking thousands of lives in
Mexico every year. Two of the countries where the Yankee troops and
their military bases are stationed are the largest drug producers on the
planet.
    The deadly trap of drug-trafficking has failed to catch Bolivia,
Venezuela and Ecuador, revolutionary countries members of ALBA like Cuba
which are aware of what they can and should do to bring healthcare,
education and wellbeing to their peoples. They do not need foreign
troops to combat drug-trafficking.
    Bolivia is fostering a wonderful program under the leadership of an
Aymara president with the support of his people.
    Illiteracy was eradicated in less than three years: 824,101 Bolivian
learned how to read and write; 24,699 did so also in Aymara and 13,599
in Quechua. Bolivia is the third country free of illiteracy, following
Cuba and Venezuela.
    It provides free healthcare to millions of people who had never had
it before. It is one of the seven countries in the world with the
largest reduction of infant mortality rate in the last five years and
with a real possibility to meet the Millennium Goals before the year
2015, with a similar accomplishment regarding maternal deaths. It has
conducted eye surgery on 454,161 persons, 75,974 of them Brazilians,
Argentineans, Peruvians and Paraguayans.
    Bolivia has set forth an ambitious social program: every child
attending school from first to eighth grade is receiving an annual grant
to pay for the school material. This benefits nearly two million
students.
    More than 700,000 persons over 60 years of age are receiving a bonus
equivalent to some 342 dollars annually.
    Every pregnant woman and child under two years of age is receiving
an additional benefit of approximately 257 dollars.
    Bolivia, one of the three poorest nations in the hemisphere, has
brought under state control the country’s most important energy and
mineral resources while respecting and compensating every single
affected interest. It is advancing carefully because it does not want to
take a step backward. Its hard currency reserves have been growing, and
now they are no less than three times higher than they were at the
beginning of Evo’s mandate. It is one of the countries making a better
use of external cooperation and it is a strong advocate of the
environment.
    In a very short time, Bolivia has been able to establish the
Biometric Electoral Register and approximately 4.7 million voters have
registered, that is, nearly a million more than in the last electoral
roll that in January 2009 included 3.8 million.
    There will be elections on December 6. Surely, the people’s support
for their President will increase. Nothing has stopped his growing
prestige and popularity.
    Why is he not awarded the Nobel Peace Prize?
    I understand his great disadvantage: he is not the President of the
United States of America.

Fidel Castro Ruz

October 15, 2009

4:25 PM

 

Cuban News Agency
www.cubanews.ain.cu
ainnews@ain.cu

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