A protest in front of the DC-based lobbying firm that has been hired by the Honduran coup regime.
On June 28 the democratically elected President of Honduras Mr Manuel Zelaya was kidnapped and exiled at gunpoint. Swiftly after, a coup regime led by Mr Roberto Micheletti, illegally grabbed power. Since that time there have been hundreds of human rights violations at the hands of the military and police (under the orders of Mr Micheletti).
Hundreds of peasants, teachers, youth, and others opposed to the coup have been arbitrarily beaten, jailed without due process, and a few dozen have been charged with sedition. Fourteen Hondurans, among them leaders of groups opposing the coup, have died as a result of police repression or have been assassinated under circumstances that point to the regime. Journalists have been threatened, attacked, and detained. In its most egregious attempt at quieting the opposition to the coup, Mr Micheletti suspended last month Hondurans’ freedoms of speech and assembly, among others. The regime shut down two opposing media outlets. What is happening in Honduras echoes a history of coups, violence, and repression in Latin America that should not be repeated.
The coup regime of Honduras has hired the services of Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter & Associates to clean up its image in the U.S. A copy of the contract can be found on the Department of Justice’s web site http://www.fara.gov/docs/5774-Exhibit-AB-20090918-7.pdf. It is outrageous that in this day and age a US lobbying firm can take up the case of an egregiously violent and repressive regime and serve as a channel to U.S. politicians, newsmakers, and commentators. Chlopak’s implicit endorsement of the regime’s record of human rights violations is simply unacceptable. It requires a clear and concise response from Hondurans and supporters in the DC area.
In front of the offices of Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter & Associates
1850 M Street NW, Washington, DC
Closest Metro Station: Dupont (Dupont South Exit)
Monday, October 19, 2009, 12.30 – 1.30 PM
Mario Ramos (en español)
firstname.lastname@example.org / 301.842.4520
Sergio Moncada (in English)
email@example.com / 202.431.1729
Beth Geglia (in English)
firstname.lastname@example.org / 202.256.5263