Today, May 5th, 2016, the Agricultural Missions Solidarity Delegation to Honduras met with representatives of the US Embassy. Our demands included: (1) an independent and thorough investigation of Bertha Cáceres assassination by the Inter-American Commission for Human Rights, (2) upholding respect for the international conventions concerning the rights of Indigenous peoples including Free, Prior, and Informed consent, and (3) the demilitarization of Honduras and US-Honduras relations.
Our delegation voiced passionate, articulate analyses and testimonies of the situation faced by Honduran people. To these, the embassy representatives’ most salient response was, literally, “this is above our pay grade”. Our main disagreement concerned that the US and embassy officials could be exerting greater pressure upon the virtual dictatorship that rules Honduras.
For officials sequestered far behind the protective ramparts of the embassy fortress, the extreme suffering and vulnerability that are experienced by the majority of Honduran people lacked the urgency that our delegation felt. We pointed out that the US, which is closely involved in the investigation, has a responsibility to push for justice and hold the highest intellectual authors accountable.