Networks and organizations across the Americas and Europe issue a statement condemning the assassination of the Honduran human rights activist Berta Cáceres.
Berta Cáceres, Lenca indigenous leader and coordinator of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH) was murdered yesterday at her residence in La Esperanza, Intibucá, Honduras. While expressing its deepest condolences to her family, civil society urges the Honduran authorities to invest all necessary resources to investigate, prosecute, punish those responsible and take appropriate remedy measures, including publicly dignifying the memory of Berta. The international community, the statement reads, should also “take all necessary measures to ensure that the Honduran State fulfill its human rights obligations.”
Berta Cáceres lived defending the territorial and cultural rights of indigenous peoples, the Garifuna peoples and peasants. She was recognized nationally and internationally as a human rights defender, particularly the rights of women and indigenous peoples. In recent years, Berta was the victim of harassment, persecution, intimidation, stigmatization and discrimination both by State and non-State actors, because of her activities defending human rights of indigenous communities opposed to the hydroelectric and mining operations that have been imposed in their territories without their free, prior and informed consent.
PBI is deeply saddened about the killing of Berta Cáceres. We would like to express our condolences to the family and colleagues of Berta who continue in their struggle despite the risks they face.
See below some reactions:
The Guardian “Her death prompted international outrage at the murderous treatment of campaigners in Honduras, as well as a flood of tributes to a prominent and courageous defender of the natural world.”
Joyce Anelay, Minister of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office “Condemn the murder of brave Honduran Human Rights and Environment activist Berta Cáceres”
Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International. “Unless the authorities in Honduras take decisive action to find those responsible for this heinous crime and take measures to protect other activists like Berta, they will have blood on their hands.”