Peace Brigades mourns the murder of trans rights activist Escarleth Caceres in Honduras
On July 10 at 8 pm, Escarleth Caceres, a member of the LGBT Rainbow Association, was shot in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. She died soon afterwards in hospital.
El Heraldo reports: “According to preliminary versions, Caceres was chatting with a group of friends near ‘El Arbolito’ when a car, a tourist type, was parked on the spot. Seconds later, several men got out of the car and approached the victim’s location to shoot her repeatedly, then fleeing from the immediate vicinity of the area.”
The LGBT Rainbow Association (Arcoiris) has posted: “Tragedy has struck our LGTB population again. Violence and hatred towards our trans sisters has claimed another victim.”
It adds: “It leaves us with a knot in our throat and helplessness to see how we are being killed and killed cruelly and the authorities of this country do nothing.”
Arcoiris has also posted: “Scarleth Cáceres was a victim of the hatred and violence that prevails in our country. We reject all acts of hatred, stigma and discrimination towards our LGTB population.”
The Peace Brigades International-Honduras Project has posted: “We regret the murder of Scarleth Cambell, trans woman, activist of the Asociación LGTB Arcoiris de Honduras collective. We show our solidarity with the community and express our concern about the situation of grave danger facing these people day after day.”
PBI began accompanying Arcoíris in July 2015.
Earlier this year, PBI-Honduras noted: “Since the assassination of trans rights defender Bessy Ferrera and the attempted murder of Vicky Carvajal in July 2019, Arcoiris has reported at least 15 security incidents, including cases of intimidation, threats, surveillance, physical assaults, muggings, attempted kidnapping and attempted murder.”
From June 2015 to March 2016, six members of Arcoíris were killed.
Journalist Dina Meza has written that from the time of the 2009 coup in Honduras to July 2019, 325 people from the LGTBI community have been killed. Honduras also had the highest per capita number of transgender murders in the world between 2008 and 2014, according to a report by Transgender Europe.
Furthermore, of the 141 violent deaths reported between 2010 and 2014, less than one-quarter (30) of the cases have been prosecuted in the courts.
Arcoíris coordinator Donny Reyes has stated: “The biggest problem that we face is the violence of the state security forces towards the LGBT+ community: the armed forces, the police, the criminal investigation police, military police, municipal police.”
Reyes adds: “The research studies that Arcoiris and other organizations have done reflect the same pattern — more than 60 per cent of hate crimes have been committed against us by those forces who should be guaranteeing our safety.”
Peace Brigades International-Canada mourns the death of Escarleth Caceres and expresses our solidarity with the LGBTQI+ community in Honduras.