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Six Years Post Coup: A Human Rights Activist Reflects on a Country in Crisis

Posted: July 5, 2015 at 4:48 pm by , in Early Morning News

A glance at corporate-driven media in Honduras would reveal a climate of violence that is attributed to gang activity or drugs.  This intentional practice is profitable.

Karen Spring explains while giving her observations and analysis to KGNU about the violence the day before the six-year anniversary of the June 28, 2009 military coup.  She arrived in Honduras shortly after the very coup that hurled the country into months of protests against an oligarch takeover of the country and the subsequent repression against the movement that sought a return to democracy.

She said that media coverage of government violence and death squads against communities that oppose government policy that displaces them, or denies basic human rights is virtually nonexistent or heavily suppressed or repressed.  If coverage does make its way to the pages, those who stand to lose their ancestral land, their clean water, their opportunity to feed their families are portrayed as responsible for the violence.  The few who stand to gain from land grabs, from the extraction of natural resources, from the elimination of those who stand in the way of profit have control of the majority of the media.

A review of the listing of corporate owned media shows that the major publications in the country are owned by three people:  Jorge Canajuatri Larach, Rodrigo Wong Arevalo, and Carlos Flores Facusse whose empire just underwent major change several days ago when his uncle died and with whom he had a close business relationship.

Spring talks about the current marches in the street with numbers that are growing everyday and who protest the corruption in the government especially with the recent exposure of the election fraud of 2013.  She talks about how the protests have changed in composition and that the protests which once involved groups most at risk such as the LGBTQ community and indigenous communities, now involve members of the middle class.

“They’ll continue to educate the public and people that are watching about why people stay on the streets, and why the coup occurred and why so many people have lost their lives.  I’m sure they’ll touch on the role of the United States in the issues and in the coup itself and also on the violence and the repression that followed afterwards.”

Spring gives her perspective on the marches that you won’t hear coming out of Honduras in traditional media.  She is the current Latin American Coordinator for the Honduras Solidarity Network and has led dozens of international delegations through Honduras into communities where few other visitors to the country have been.

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