229 Politically Related Murders in Honduras Under President “Pepe” Lobo

229 Politically Related Murders in Honduras

Under President "Pepe" Lobo

(Download Full Report Below)  

Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America (CRLN)

20 November 2013





Politically Related Murders in Honduras Under President "Pepe" Lobo is a chronology of politically motivated or politically related murders in post-coup Honduras during the period from the 27 January 2010 installation of President Porfirio "Pepe" Lobo until 20 November 2013 on the eve of new, inclusive Honduran elections.  It chronicles the murders of 229 Honduran civilians primarily by state security forces or death squads linked to state security forces or Honduran oligarchs behind the 2009 coup.  These murders capture the scope and nature of organized repression in Honduras targeting non-violent social movements in resistance to the 28 June 2009 coup: trade unionists, campesinos in farming cooperatives, land rights and environmental activists, indigenous peoples, afro-Hondurans, LGBT Hondurans, students, teachers, lawyers, journalists, and women in resistance organizations.  Additionally, this chronology includes the murders published by Rights Action of political activists and candidates from the varied, competing political parties, both anti-coup and pro-coup, in the 20 months leading up to the 24 November 2013 elections.  While the report concludes with a limited number of forced disappearances, it covers only 2010-2011 and is quite limited due to lack of reporting.  Nor have follow-up updates been received.


Unfortunately, this chronology documents only the most well-known cases that have been publicly denounced by campesinos or trade unions, and by Honduran and international human rights organizations.  A far greater number of murders related to the coup have taken place, but show up only as general statistics.  For example, the LGBT community reports 120 murders of LGBT Hondurans since the coup until now.  However, only a handful are cited in this report due to source confidentiality, capacity limitations of volunteer and professional organizations, and safety concerns in making these other murders publicly known.  


This report does not cover the many other brutal methods of intimidation and hostility short of death used against the non-violent social movements in resistance, such as targeted death threats, beatings, rapes, abductions, false accusations, arrests, and imprisonments - which have affected thousands of Hondurans.  The staggering scope of the political violence in Honduras - and the impunity with which it carried out - does not conform with the democratic rule of law or to a country that is not at war. 


Finally, since the victims were not specifically targeted for political reasons, this report does not include the 11 May 2012 U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) interdiction operation along the Patuca River the village of Ahuas, Gracias a Dios department, carried out by dozens of heavily-armed Honduran and U.S. police agents that left two women, a teenager and a young man dead and several others injured - to which there has been only a deeply flawed Honduran government investigation, no U.S. government investigation, no accountability for the killings, and no restitution to survivors or victim families.


First released in mid-2011, this chronology remains a work in progress.   Please advise us of any omissions, corrections, and updates to this chronology of politically related murders in Honduras.


Gary Cozette, Program Director

Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America (CRLN)