Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Honduras repression: urgent solidarity needed!

Following the recent return of ousted president Manuel Zelaya to Honduras, the coup-leaders have apparently sent squadrons of loyal police and army to besiege the Brazilian embassy, where Zelaya has been staying.

The coup forces have dispersed the pro-Zelaya crowd in front of the embassy by force (using firearms, teargas, pepper spray and rubber bullets, occupied adjacent buildings, snipers have been installed on the roofs of neighbouring building, and sonic weapons have been deployed in the streets.

Electricity, water and phones were been cut to the embassy, as well as surrounding building - the only anti-coup TV station, Channel 36, is now effectively off-air after its electricity was cut - and it appears that tear gas has been fired into the Brazilian embassy
. The tear gas also killed an eight-year-old boy in a nearby building - dying of asphixiation from the gas.

The electricity cut was clearly meant to intimidate Zelaya or the Brazilians - or both - into submission. It failed, and electricity was restored some time later. Zelaya remains inside the embassy, with around 70 supporters.

The curfew has also been extended - effectively turning the whole country into a giant concentration camp, and at least one protester, Oscar Adán Palacios, was shot to death on by the army while peacefully protesting against the illegitimate government.

In a move eerily reminiscent of the fascist 1973 Pinochet coup in Chile, the National Police are holding unspecified numbers protesters in the Chochy Sosa baseball stadium and football stadiums in Tegucigalpa. Adrés Pavon, president of the Human Rights Defence Committee says "there are people being tortured, disappeared, and we are confirming the death of two people." Bertha Oliva, director of the Committee of the Families of the Detained and Disappeared in Honduras (COFADEH) called the stadium a "concentration camp".

COFADEH itself was subject to a police attack yesterday (Tuesday) morning, with tear gas launched through the windows.

The National Front Against the Coup in Honduras (FNRG)
has claimed that members of the Israeli Army are training a group of the National Police in protest disruption tactics.

According to NarcoNews, at least two popular barrios in and around Tegucigalpa have defied, en masse, the curfew order and chased National Police out of their communities: El Pedregal and Colonia Kennedy. They've erected barricades and declared the coup regime and its security forces non grata. [update: see comments for a longer list of barrios that have defied the curfew and are protesting the coup]

The website of the FNRG posted a declaration at 11am calling on “all of the resistance” to participate in “a peaceful march tomorrow, September 23 at 8am in front of the Pedagogical University Francisco Morazan”.

More regular updates from: NarcoNews, HondurasCoup2009, HondurasResists, Green Left Weekly, Emergency Committee Against The Coup In Honduras, Socialist Unity blog, BoRev,

There will be an emergency protest in solidarity with the Honduran people in Sydney on Thursday September 24 at 5pm, in the Latin American Plaza (outside Central Station).

"The Real News" on the repression after Zelaya's return:

1 comment:

Red Wombat said...

From, more detailed info on the neighborhood-by-neighborhood uprising underway in Greater Tegucigalpa today and tonight:

The de facto government, through its violence and denial of constitutional and human rights, has managed what Zelaya alone had not fully succeeded in doing: uniting the entire country in the struggle for freedom. Today, they resistance underwent an important shift: it went local. The following Tegucigalpa neighborhoods are defying the curfew and protesting against the coup d'etat:

1. Arturo Quesada
2. Barrio Morazán
3. Centroamérica Oeste
4. Cerro Grande
5. Ciudad Lempira
6. Colonia 21 de Febrero
7. Colonia 21 de Octubre
8. El Bosque
9. El Chile
10. Flor del Campo
11. Hato de Enmedio
12. Kennedy
13. La Fraternidad
14. Pantanal
15. Pedregal
16. Picachito
17. Reparto
18. Residencial Girasoles
19. Residencial Honduras
20. San José de la Vega
21. Sinaí
22. Víctor F. Ardón
23. Villa Olímpica
24. Villanueva

In some places people have repelled the police, while in others the terrain is in dispute. The police are using live ammunition. Barricades are everywhere. This list was current at 7pm local time in Tegucigalpa.