Since the coup d’état took place in Honduras on June 28, 2009, Peace Brigades International (PBI) has followed with growing concern the serious deterioration of space for the defence of human rights faced by organisations, communities and human rights defenders in the country.
In response to a request for international accompaniment from the National Human Rights Platform of Honduras (Plataforma de Derechos Humanos de Honduras), PBI made a first visit to the country in May 2011 to verify the human rights situation. Subsequently, after a period of intensive analysis within the organisation, PBI decided to evaluate the feasibility of opening an international accompaniment project in this country and, in the months of September and October 2012, carried out a second visit with this objective. We met with journalists, judges, workers from human rights organisations, indigenous and small-farmers movements, women’s organisations and trade unions. The committed women and men we spoke with talked about the danger and grave threats they face.
Many defenders and others we spoke to such as embassy staff felt that the presence of PBI volunteers on the ground, and the activation of our extensive international support networks, could have a tangible impact and enable human rights defenders to continue with their work. We published a report on the situation for human rights defenders in Honduras, based on our work in 2012. We have opened a protective accompaniment project in the country in 2013.