In continuing our ongoing coverage of the human rights crisis in Honduras, we talk about a kidnapping that happened on Saturday. The Panamá region is from where we reported in 2013 where a makeshift grave was found of a farmer who had been beaten and tortured and whose bones were discovered to have been broken in multiple places following an exhumation and forensic team investigation.
In this most recent incident, eighteen year old Cristian Martinez Lopez was last seen on Saturday night when he didn’t return after running an errand on his bike. It’s important to note that this particular area is near the gates where wealthy landowner Miguel Facusse houses his security guards. In 2012 it was at another plantation that belonged to Miguel Facusse where his security guards shot at human rights observers whom KGNU was accompanying.
Here we speak with human rights defender Yoni Rivas whom we’ve heard on KGNU before in 2013 when he talked about his organizing work for land rights. Out of respect to our Spanish speaking listeners, we are providing subsequent rather than simultaneous interpretation.
AND THIS IN BREAKING NEWS: KGNU received word this morning that Cristian Martinez Lopez has been found alive. Human rights observer Greg McCain who has lived in the Bajo Aguan region for over two years wrote:
“He was found today alive in an orange field near the Paso Aguán plantation. A search was initiated by the Special Investigative Team of Violent Deaths. They are the unit from the Ministerio Publico that has been doing the exhumations and investigations in the Aguán for about the past year. They along with about 120 members of the La Panama community and other campesino communities began a search early today and found him badly beaten and disoriented which contradicts newspaper reports of the police stating that there were no signs of torture. It is unclear who kidnapped him, but apparently they questioned him about the La Panamá community looking for information about the community’s leadership.”
KGNU has reported numerous times about the kidnapping or murdering of the children of those in leadership of campesino cooperatives who are working for land rights and other human and civil rights. See kgnu.org and click on “SHOW ARCHIVES” and then click on the schedule for Early Morning News and then scroll down for previous coverage.
photos courtesy of Movimiento MUCA