Social movement leaders in Honduras, including members of Grassroots International’s partner, La Via Campesina, fear for their lives, as tens of thousands have gathered to protest Sunday’s coup d’etat against President Jose Manuel « Mel » Zelaya Rosales.
The military coup, supported by the political elite, was a result of over 80% of the Honduran population’s support for President Zelaya’s plan to carry out a national public opinion poll on possible constitutional reforms, which was scheduled for June 28, 2009. Events related to the conflict over the poll and leading up to the coup have been unfolding over the last several days, and more information can be found on the blog page of the Center for International Policy’s Americas Program.
President Zelaya’s government has adopted progressive policies and defended the rights of working people and peasants. Honduran citizens have gathered to defend democracy, in spite of the military occupation of the country and violent repression of protestors, and see the coup as a last resort by right- wing forces to protect the interests of the wealthy elite.
Human rights organizations and governments around the world, including the U.S., have joined together in calling attention to and condemning these reprehensible acts. Please act with urgency to help them make a bigger impact in support of human rights and democracy.