International Organizations call for halt of criminalization against environmental defenders in Honduras

On July 5th, environmental activists from Valle de Siria, Carlos Amador and Marlon Hernández, were captured by police based on a warrant for their arrest issued by a local judge for the crime of “opposing logging carried out by the Raudales family”.

Last year, on April 2, 2010 when armed men with chain saws entered the mountain “La Torrecita” to cut down the forest, approximately 700 people from surrounding communities decided to defend it. At that time, Carlos Amador with the Environmental Committee of the Siria Valley denounced the logging with appropriate authorities. 
However, the Raudales family has continued its efforts to log the mountain, including securing last week’s arrest warrant against environmental leaders as communities mobilized once again to block renewed efforts to log the mountain.  
The Friendship Office of the Americas joined 51 organizations in signing a letter to representatives of the Honduras Justice system and the U.S. and Canadian Diplomatic Corp in Honduras calling for a Halt the Criminalization of Honduran Environmental Defenders (you can read a copy of the letter in Spanish here).
Amador is a well known environmental leader who has struggled for the environmental defense of the Valle de Siria where a subsidiary of the mining company Goldcorp contaminated the zone for many years impacting the health of thousands of people due to the emission of cyanide and other poisons.
Source: COFADEH, Defensores en linea