PBI-Honduras calls for fair and transparent trial for Garifuna defenders arbitrarily detained at illegal eviction in Punta Gorda

Published by Brent Patterson on

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On November 22, PBI-Honduras tweeted:

“We stress the importance of a fair and transparent trial for defenders of the Garífuna community in Punta Gorda, Roatán, so we hope that it will be broadcast live.”

The Mesoamerican Initiative of Women Human Rights Defenders (IM-Defensoras) has also tweeted:

Tomorrow, November 23 at 9 am, the hearing against Melissa Martínez, coordinator of the @ofraneh [the Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras] in Punta Gorda and defenders Dorotea Arzú, Keyden Tishany Gonzales, Richard Armando Martínez, Abot Efrahin Sánchez and Augusto Moisés Dolmo.

On November 7, after a violent and illegal eviction from the community of Punta Gorda, Roatán, six defenders were arbitrarily detained and criminalized, charging them with the crimes of aggravated usurpation, and in one of the cases, assault.

The hearing that will take place in the Departmental Court of First Instance, Roatán, Bay Islands, will be presided over by Judge Allan Joel Urbina García, who also ordered the eviction.

Together with the @RedDefensoras [the National Network of Women Human Rights Defenders in Honduras] we keep abreast of this situation and stand in solidarity with the Garífuna community in the face of capitalist and racist dispossession that threatens their survival.

News report

On November 7, the Spanish news agency EFE reported:

The Garifuna (black) community of Honduras denounced on Monday a “forced eviction” of dozens of people in the community of Punta Gorda, on the island of Roatan, in the Caribbean of the country, a fact that also left six detainees.

The Honduran Black Fraternal Organization (Ofraneh) said on Twitter that six defenders of ancestral territory were detained by security forces who “demonstrated in addition to their racism, the inclination for violence.”

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) condemned “the aggressions and detention” of the six members of the Garifuna community in Punta Gorda in the context of “forced eviction executed by police and military forces in contravention of human rights obligations.”

Amnesty International’s Americas director, Erika Guevara-Rosas, also condemned the violent eviction, demanded the release of the detainees and that “their human rights be respected.”

The full article can be read at Comunidad negra de Honduras denuncia “desalojo forzado” en comunidad caribeña.

We are watching this situation from Canada as well.

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