Pedro Salgado, president of the peasant settlement, La Concepción, in the Bajo Aguán and his wife Reina Mejía, were murdered in their own home in the settlement on Sunday, August 21 at 8:30 pm. La Concepción is part of the Peasant Movement of the Aguán, MUCA.
This crime follows the murder of Secundino Ruíz, president of the San Isidro Cooperative, of the Authentic Peasant Re-vindication Movement the Aguán, MARCA, on August 20 at 11:30am in the Barrio San Isidro, Tocoa Colón. Ruiz was driving a vehicle with the treasurer of the cooperative, Eliseo Pavón and was fired on by individuals on a motorcycle. Pavon escaped with his life from this violent act.
Since last Thursday, the regime militarized the Aguán through Operation Xatruch II, arguing that this would lead to “peace” in the zone. However, the murder of peasants in the zone has increased in the last hours.
COFADEH condemns this new bloody act that causes great suffering to the families struggling for land as a human right that should be guaranteed by the State; however there is no sign of a timely or peaceful solution.
International human rights organizations indicated in a public statement that it will only be possible to achieve a peaceful and negotiated resolution of the agrarian conflict in the Bajo Aguán through the establishment of a framework of public policies that respect and comply with international human rights obligations assumed by Honduras, including measures necessary: to protect human life, eradicate impunity, establish effective control and supervision of public and private security in the zone, guarantee the right of the population to food by facilitating access to land as well as the fulfillment of agreements reached by parties in the conflict, in particular the agreements of April 13, 2010 and June 16, 2011.
Tegucigalpa. August 21, 2011