Frente, COFADEH denounce ongoing climate of repression for the "electoral farce" in Honduras

"Even though they try to blame us for the violence, the violence is coming in one direction: from them, towards us." – Tomas Andino

  • Tanks and machine guns at STIBYS union headquarters
  • Red Comal raided and materials confiscated
  • Youth flee for their lives
  • Police launch bombs into communities
  • Journalist’s whereabouts unknown

Tegucigalpa, Honduras, 11:00am:  Members of the National Front of Resistance Against the Coup, along with human rights defender Bertha Oliva, denounce the ongoing climate of violence, repression, and political persecution in which the "electoral farce" is taking place.  The Frente’s communique affirms the lack of presence at the polls, de-authorizing the Supreme Electoral Tribunal from declaring results in a process that is obviously illigitimate.  (See translation of their release here)

Bertha Oliva, head of COFADEH, a well-respected non-governmental human rights organization, detailed over 15 cases from yesterday and today in which youth, Resistance leaders, teachers and campesinos were targeted by the police and military, in illegal raids, home invasions, and detentions, as well as military blockades around the STIBYS union headquarters which has served as the meeting space for the Frente, and the fact that the whereabouts of a Spanish journalist are unknown but he was believed to be detained in the Central Park. Twenty youth from a community in the department of Santa Barbara have fled the community, fearing for their lives as they and their families are being followed and intimidated by agents of the state.

When asked about whether the Frente would observe the popular curfew or take to the streets, Via Campesina and Frente leader Rafael Alegria stated that the Frente in different locations is making indepenent decisions. In San Pedro Sula, the Frente has organized a march (according to Quixote delegation members there, at least 500 people are mobilized with significant police presence but no repression thus far), while in Tegucigalpa "the repression has been so consistent and so grave" that the Frente is continuing to call for people to stay in their homes.

Human rights leaders are trying to get habeas writs executed, to prove the whereabouts of different detainees, but the courts are closed today, which is itself a violation of due process and the Constitution.

Alegria reinforced the message that there is no "civic celebration" of elections today, as there has been in the past, while Oliva pointed out that the majority of Frente leadership has gone into hiding in order to protect itself.

"The coup regime’s repression is backfiring," said Frente member Tomas Andino.  "The coup regime’s attitude is one of preparing itself for a war."