Honduras: An International Commission Against Impunity Will Not Work With the Golpistas in the Judicial System

With regards to the proposed International Commission Against Impunity, the Committee of Families of the Detained and Disappeared of Honduras, COFADEH, takes the following position:

1. The antecedents for International Commissions visiting Honduras do not inspire hope: the Organization of American States (OAS) named various American politicians—headed by Chilean ex-president Ricardo Lagos and the U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solís—to make up the San José-Guaymuras Accords Verification Commission, and to date the arguments of the OAS are a dead letter. Similarly, the Pepe Lobo regime convened a “Commission for Truth and Reconciliation” presided over by Guatemalan politician Eduardo Stein, and they still have no time limit for when they will present their report, and the people of Honduras will not be able to access their research for 10 years.

2. It is unacceptable that the golpistas themselves participate as members of the “Commission for Truth and Reconciliation,” generating massive distrust and disappointment in the country where injustice rules.

Among the supporters of the coup making up said commission are Julieta Castellanos, current rector of the National Autonomous University of Honduras, UNAH, who has repeatedly violated the human rights of the workers against whom she maintains a ferocious campaign of political persecution, to the extreme of calling the repressive forces in to quash the actions of the union members and students. [Also,] Omar Casco, ex-university rector and politician from the National Party, is a key player among the groups of power in Honduras. His role in the nominating committee to select the current Supreme Court in Honduras was crucial for placing the oligarchy in control of that State power. Economist Sergio Membreño, who walks hand in hand with Cardenal Oscar Andrés Rodríguez, represents the latter’s interests in numerous arenas.

There is a state of defenselessness. The Honduran nation does not receive a response from institutions created by the state, like the National Commission for Human Rights and the Office of the Public Prosecutor, whose directors, Ramón Custodio and Luís Alberto Rubí, are the principle legal defenders of the coup d’etat.

3. The creation of commissions, committees and ministries is an attempt to control [discourse and practice surrounding] human rights in Honduras from the office of the president; to bring in international financial resources and foment political clientelism. It also functions to establish the perception among the international community that in Honduras transparency exists and that the current government has external legitimacy.
4. Political crimes and collective murders as part of a criminal State policy against the Honduran people struggling to refound the nation is the everyday reality. There are grave violations of human rights that can be quickly and easily investigated, like the massive attacks on public gatherings, about which no action whatsoever has been taken by the Office of the Public Prosecutor.

5. The only way that an International Commission Against Impunity could work in Honduras would be: suspending the functions of the Ministry of Public Security, the Supreme Court and the Office of the Public Prosecutor, beginning by taking away their legal authority to investigate and emit rigged verdicts as a means of political persecution. A radical transformation of these institutions via a purge [of supporters of state violence] in which the entire Honduran people participate in order to ensure that the dirty hands of the groups of power are removed is urgently needed; if this does not occur, we would paradoxically be promoting the utilization of international resources to foment impunity.


Committee of Families of the Detained and Disappeared of Honduras