PBI-Honduras accompanies event marking the 4th anniversary of a blockade against dam on the Jilamito River

Published by Brent Patterson on

The Peace Brigades International-Honduras Project has posted on Facebook: “On May 15, PBI accompanied the [fourth anniversary] event for the Defence of the Jilamito River, where the communities ratified that ‘the river is for our community water project and that defending the right to water is defending life’.”

The Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice (MADJ) set up the ‘dignity camp’ on May 15, 2017 in opposition to the construction of a dam on the river.

Movimiento Amplio has also tweeted: “On the fourth anniversary of Camp Worthy for the Defense of the Jilamito River. From the communities we say: ‘The people of Arizona will continue fighting for our Jilamito River as long as necessary.’”

In May 2018, The Guardian reported that the “Jilamito Five” face a “land invasion” charge and “the authorities are hoping a prosecution will enable them to clear a makeshift community blockade in the remote hilly pastures so construction can begin.”

Financing the dam

PBI-Honduras further notes: “[Communities expressed] the rejection of financing from the Inter-American Development Bank, the company Ingelsa and the United States International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), and demand that the NO to extractive projects in the territory be respected.”

On April 5, this letter signed by Peace Brigades International-USA and 60 other organizations called on U.S. Department of the Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to cancel the international funding of the Jilamito project.

That letter states:

“We, the undersigned organizations, write to express our seriousness concern about the decision of IDB Invest, a member of the Inter-American Bank Group of Desarrollo, which in December 2020 approved a loan of $ 20.25 million for the Jilamito Hydroelectric Project in Honduras.”

“We urge you to use the voice of the United States within IDB Invest and your role as a member of the DFC [the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation] Board of Directors to suspend proposed funding for the Jilamito Hydroelectric Project, ensure that no disbursements are made and that financing is definitely canceled.”

Furthermore, Martín Fernández Guzman, a member of Movimiento Amplio, recently spoke on a PBI-USA organized webinar about the resistance in Honduras to the dam. He highlighted the Canadian financing of the dam.

The Honduras Solidarity Network has also noted: “It’s not just the DFC that’s involved in funding this project, but also the Canadian government and the private arm of the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB).”

We continue to follow this.

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