“Today it is a crime to defend human rights”. Interview with indigenous leader Bertha Cáceres

Orsetta Bellani, Latinamerica Press (Photo: O.B.)

Eighty percent of crimes go unpunished in Honduras, yet social movements there are criminalized and prosecuted. In the Lenca peoples’ fight against hydroelectric power firm Agua Zarca, on the grounds the company is privatizing rivers, water, land and energy, three members of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH) are accused of serious offenses: Tomás Gómez, Aureliano Molina and Bertha Cáceres, the organization’s general coordinator. Latinamerica Press correspondent Orsetta Bellani interviewed Cáceres on the eve of the country’s presidential elections Nov. 24, which were ultimately won by right-wing candidate Juan Orlando Hernández. Continue reading…

Chiapas: Paramilitary action continues

Orsetta Bellani, Latinamerica Press (Photo: O.B.)
 

The front porches of the homes in Ejido Puebla, in the southern state of Chiapas’ Chenalhó municipality, are covered with coffee beans. Since October, the residents of this indigenous Tzotzil Maya community in a corner of the Chiapas highlands have been harvesting the seeds that are now drying under the sun. Continue reading…