The US Development Finance Corporation (DFC) withdraws financial support for the Jilamito dam in Honduras

Published by Brent Patterson on

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On May 27, Vice News reported: “The U.S. government withdrew financial support this week from a proposed dam in Honduras that is at the center of a simmering conflict between local residents and developers. Two opponents of the project have been killed. “

“Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice (MADJ) co-founder Martín Fernández said that the proposed dam would deprive as many as 30,000 people of drinking water and pointed to similar dam projects that he said privatized access to water.”

US and Canadian financing of the dam

The article adds: “The decision by the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, (DFC) marked a victory for the activist groups in Honduras and the United States that had urged the agency to drop the project.”

“The Biden Administration’s about-face eliminated almost half the funding for the $75.6 million-dollar dam project. A division of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), a multilateral financial institution, has pledged another 27 percent of the dam’s cost in loans. The division, IDB Invest, had no comment on the DFC’s withdrawal.”

The Peace Brigades International-Honduras Project has previously noted: “[Communities have 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.”

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).”

PBI accompaniment

On May 15, PBI-Honduras 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.’”

Last month, 60 organizations, including our colleagues at PBI-USA, School of the Americas Watch, and the Witness for Peace Solidarity Collective, signed this letter calling on the US Treasury Secretary to oppose financing for the dam.

We continue to follow this.

The reaction from PBI-Honduras to the news:

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