Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Berta's Family Accuses the Government of Complicity in her Death

Family members of Berta Càceres condemn the prosecutor’s office for protecting the murderers. There is a financial connection between the director of the prosecution and the DESA lawyers. They believe that the Honduran state knew of the plan to assassinate indigenous leader Berta Càceres.


Mr. President of the Republic, Juan Orlando Hernández,

Mr. Attorney General of the Republic, Oscar Chinchilla,

The family members of Berta Cáceres, COPINH, the Grassroots Social Movement Platform of Honduras (PMSPH) and the Articulación Popular Berta Cáceres, with Honduran society and the International community listening, writes to you to express and demand the following:

It has been almost a month since the crime against Berta Cáceres and Gustavo Castro. Up until now, what we know with certainty is that you as principal figures within the Honduran state and government have not fulfilled your responsibility to protect Berta’s life, despite her repeated denunciations of death threats and the fact that since 2009 the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights told you that she was facing serious and real danger and asked for you to protect her. That means that you are already responsible for this crime and we hope that you will one day be brought before a court of law. 

It is incumbent upon you to explain and clarify several events that have taken place in the aftermath of the crime against Berta and Gustavo Castro, but this should be done first to the victims and then to others as you see fit. Among the main points that should be clarified are:
  • Who came up with the hypothesis (the only one that you have made public), that the crime against Berta is related to a personal conflict or COPINH’s internal affairs?
  • What actions have been taken with regards to the public officials who have failed or fallen short in their obligation to protect Berta Cáceres?
  • What actions have been taken against police, prosecutors, witnesses and other people who in the first hours after the crime had already resolved the case, with egregious falsehoods, and insisted on accusing anybody in order to ensure impunity and reduce the National and International pressure that the crime provoked?
  • What actions have been taken with regards to the manipulation of the crime scene and the investigative process that has been publicly condemned by numerous parties, including the victim, Gustavo Castro?
  • Why do you insist on keeping Gustavo Castro in the country and violating his human rights despite collaboration with the investigation and willingness to continue collaborating from his home in Mexico?
  • Why have you not attended to the requests made by the daughters, son, mother and other family members of Berta?
  • Why don’t you accept an independent commission directed by the IACHR, to help with the investigation of the crime?
  • Why do you refuse the active participation of the victims in the investigation via their legal representatives?
  • What are you hiding, what are those who you are protecting afraid of, why do you insist on continuing to violate the rights of the victims? 
  • What role does the FBI play in the investigation of the crime? In what ways has this body intervened?
  • Who are and what is the experience of the people who are supposedly collaborating with the Honduran authorities?
  • Are these FBI agents participating in the investigation to assure impunity for DESA, for USAID, for the U.S. Embassy in Honduras and for you as the government?
  • What are and how do you explain the terms of the cooperation agreement between USAID and DESA, the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project developer and principle suspect in conceiving of and carrying out the crime against Berta? 
  • How will you explain the degree to which the investigation is independent, when the current director of prosecutors, Arturo Duarte, who is an active participant in the investigation, has been a partner in the law firm that represents DESA and that made accusations towards Berta in the La Esperanza courts in 2013?
  • Do you think that you can hide the fact that DESA’s lawyer, Juan Sánchez Cantillano, has been a partner and a personal friend of the current director of prosecutors Arturo Duarte and that this clearly compromises and lends to the manipulation of the investigation?
Mr. President and Mr. Attorney General,

Your attitude and the above-mentioned concerns give us reason to believe that you not only ceased to protect Berta, but that you may have known of the plan to assassinate her and today are part of the plan to ensure this crime remains in impunity. That is to say that all of the state’s actions and omissions with regards to the case of Berta Cáceres lead us to the assertion that there is a clear will on the part of the State to ensure that justice will not be served.

We want to reaffirm that, as victims, the family, COPINH, the PMSPH and the Articulación Popular Berta Cáceres, we are determined to seek and obtain truth and justice in this crime. For that reason we urge you to resolve the requests that the victims have already placed before you on your desks:
  • Accept the intervention of an Independent Commission of international experts guided by the IACHR to contribute actively to the investigation and clarification of the crime against Berta and Gustavo Castro.
  • Respect the rights of the victims to participate actively in the investigation already being carried out by the Attorney General’s office
  • Respect and guarantee the life and other rights of the victims, of COPINH and of the legal team that accompanies them, in particular by ensuring that they can continue with their legitimate defense of the human rights of indigenous peoples.
  • Respect the right of victim Gustavo Castro to return to his country, from where he will continue to contribute to the investigation as necessary
  • Cancel once and for all the concession of the Gualcarque River to the DESA corporation, along with all other illegitimate concessions affecting the Honduran territory.
  • We demand that you cease your campaign against Berta’s family, COPINH and the Honduran social movement. It is you who are responsible for the economic and human disaster that the country is living through; it is you, along with the political and economic class that has brought our country to the pinnacle of corruption, violence and ineptitude.
  • Finally, we reaffirm our unbreakable commitment to continue demanding and building a Honduras where justice and dignity prevail for all victims, which is to say, for the vast majority of Hondurans. 
March, 2016

Monday, March 28, 2016

No Resting or Forgetting


Berta Cáceres, our sister compañera from COPINH, our ally in the effort to build an anti-patriarchal practice within our territorial struggles against capitalism and racism, the one we sought out to shape and build this network that links us as rights defenders and feminists, Berta our compita with her own unique expressions to describe danger level with dog metaphors, the one who backed down discouragement by saying no se agüite - “don’t give in,” Berta Cáceres the one who called upon us to re-found ourselves first, to live out a different kind of power starting with ourselves and our organizations and communities, a power different than the formal one we know, one that is like she was, against the system. All of those Bertas who are really one, who are us, now, we renew her commitment through the struggle of COPINH, sparking many actions through the National Network of Women Defending Human Rights in Honduras, part of the Platform for the Grassroots Social Movement of Honduras, PMSPH.

This past March 17th-18th the streets of Tegucigalpa filled with color, chants, spirituality, drums, and cries for justice during the “Berta Cáceres Vive” National Indigenous Peoples Mobilization. The Garífuna, Lenca, Pech, Tawaka, Miskito, Maya-Chortí, Tolupán peoples joined together and made their presence felt in front of numerous government offices, only a few of which even sent out a low-level official. We denounce that, rather than offering the answers they owe for illegal water and mining concessions, for impositions in violation of ILO Convention 169, they lashed out and claimed that we would be liable for the withdrawal of financial backing by international organizations. They refused to admit that it is their state policy of exterminating human rights defenders, youth and poor women that truly makes this country unsafe for those of us who live in it. That it is the fault of their own disgusting attempt to sell the country off to the highest bidder.

The heat of this concrete city gleamed on the faces of the peoples making the pilgrimage through its tree-less streets, past its public officials. “The trees and breeze are gone,” said Miriam Miranda,
a genuine leader of OFRANEH and PMSPH. “The trees and breeze are gone, but there are people resisting here, in this other recuperated territory,” were her provocative words at the National Autonomous University of Honduras where the indigenous peoples entered triumphantly as the national heroes that they are to applause, cries of emotion, memories of Berta on everyone’s minds, present as always and as never before, her face painted on the walls, on banners, in chants, on the bodies of the young women and men who understand that their studies should translate into a commitment to struggle.

Through these days of mobilization and continuing through March 20th we organized and received a visit from a high level International Delegation with participation of representatives from the European Parliament, from Argentina’s Plaza de Mayo mothers of the disappeared, from the Mexican congress, from Jubilee South, Diálogo 2000, Grito de los Excluidos, environmental networks and social movements for water and land, key figures from different struggles and opposition parties, making up a group of people who came together with the Honduran grassroots social movement to demand justice for Berta Cáceres. The International Delegation was not received by most of the governmental offices with which appointments had been requested from the Offices of the European Parliament in Brussels, the first expression of their lack of political will to discover the truth about the killing of our compañera.

The Delegation’s presence and its commitment to follow up on the demand for justice are extremely important. Their Preliminary Report clearly expresses concern about the serious lack of accountability, the lack of an independent judicial system, the lack of respect for international law displayed by the mega-project concessions and the lack of legal justification to place compañero Gustavo Castro in danger, to not treat him as a victim and witness in the case.

The National Network of Women Defending Human Rights in Honduras denounces the extreme vulnerability of leaders and community members of Río Blanco organized as part of COPINH, who, after the assassination of Berta Cáceres, were dispersed by the DESA corporation’s private security as they walked around the Agua Zarca dam facilities and were later stopped and stripped of their bus by police as they mobilized from their community to Tegucigalpa to participate in the National Mobilization of Indigenous Peoples.

We call upon our people in general, upon the grassroots social organizations, upon the peoples of the world in solidarity with struggles for defense of indigenous territorial stewardship, to participate in the action that will take place in Río Blanco, on the banks of the Gualcarque River, to carry out a spiritual ceremony in memory of Berta Cáceres on the 22nd Anniversary of COPINH’s founding, Sunday March 27th.

Let the sacred waters of the Gualcarque River continue to run, let people build territorial autonomy, let us defend the right to defend rights.

Tegucigalpa, March 22nd, 2016.
National Network of Women in Defense of Human Rights
tw: @redefensorashn
FB: Red Nacional de Defensoras de Derechos Humanos en Honduras

Monday, March 21, 2016

Honduran State Impeding Justice in Assassination of Berta Cáceres

Statement from Berta's daughters, son and COPINH

Tegucigalpa, March 17th, 2016. 15 days after the assassination of Berta Cáceres Flores, the Honduran authorities have yet to hear the voices of those of us who demand justice via an independent and impartial investigation.

This past March 6th, the Inter-American Human Rights Commission (IACHR) issued protective measures to safeguard our lives and well-being as Berta’s family members and members of the Civil Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), and also to guarantee us the right to defend human rights free from threats to our safety. At the same time, the IACHR asked for an effective investigation of the assassination of our leader, the defender of the Lenca people, the common good and our natural resources.

In search of consensus to implement the protective measures issued by the IACHR, we, Berta’s daughters and son, COPINH and our legal representatives, have participated in meetings with the Secretary of Public Safety, senior leadership of the National Civil Police and the secretary and subsecretaries of Human Rights, Justice, Government and Decentralization. We have presented written, concrete demands regarding the investigation of the assassination, our physical protection and the necessary measures to stop the ongoing violence against the Lenca people. Thus far we have not received any formal response from the authorities regarding our proposals.

Likewise, we asked for meetings with the President of the Republic, Juan Orlando Hernández, and with the Chief National Prosecutor, Oscar Fernando Chinchilla, neither of which has even responded to us.

Regarding the investigative process, we appeal to the Honduran government to request technical assistance from the IACHR, forming a group of people with experience and a recognized history of criminal investigation to provide technical support for internal investigations and be empowered to actively participate in all due dilligence, as well as suggest corrections and issue condemnations, among other functions. This, we believe, would guarantee a transparent, independent and impartial investigation that upholds the right to truth and justice.

On their end, the Secretary of Foreign Relations and International Cooperation, as well as the National Public Prosecutor, put out press releases about the counsel that will be provided by the United Nationals High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) through its representatives in Honduras. According to the Public Prosecutor, under the framework of said support, they would be asking for that body to “certify the transparency and strict adherence” of the prosecutor’s office to its constitutional and legal mandate during the investigative process. They also ask for its “accompaniment to confirm the objectivity and impartiality of the entire investigative process.”

In light of these public statements by the authorities, this past March 16th Berta’s daughters and COPINH representatives participated in a meeting with Ms. Silvia Lavagnoli, representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) in Honduras and Mr. Félix Gómez, functionary of that same international body, in order to learn about the extent of their participation in the investigations. They expressed that their mandate does not include carrying out a criminal investigation and that they do not have the experience to do so and will not directly participate in the process. They clarified that they will be observing from a human rights perspective and from that lens will formulate recommendations to the State.

It is troubling that the Honduran government, nonetheless, seeks to confuse the national and international community about the nature of the UNHCR’s participation in this case. It is clear that this international body is not competent to participate actively in an independent and impartial investigation of Berta’s assassination but the State insists on diverting attention in order to avoid the arrival of an international presence that could in fact carry out that objective.

We also are aware that the participation of authorities linked to the U.S. government (the FBI) will be limited and, beyond that, we do not consider this a substitute for our demands of independence and impartiality.

The Honduran authorities are not listening to our demands for justice. Because of this, we denounce a lack of political will to guarantee an investigation that is transparent, independent and consistent with the highest of international standards. It is evident that the official discourse is detached from reality. Every day that passes we watch with pain and impotence as justice continues to lose the battle against impunity due to the State’s apathy.

We publiclly declare our lack of trust in the work being done by the Attorney General and we hold the authorities responsible for impeding our right to participate in the investigative process.

Finally, we reiterate our demand for #JusticeForBerta through the participation of a group of independent, experienced, international experts. 

Olivia, Bertha, Laura and Salvador Zúniga Cáceres
Civil Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH)

With the accomaniment and legal representation of the Movimiento Amplio por la Dignidad y la Justicia and the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL)

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Why We Mobilize with Berta Today - OFRANEH

March 17th, 2016 marks the beginning of a massive mobilization spearheaded by indigenous and black Hondurans and accompanied by the rest of the Honduran social movements aimed at shutting down Honduras's capital city of Tegucigalpa until demands are met for justice in the assassination of Berta Cáceres. One of the primary conveners is the Fraternal Black Organization of Honduras, OFRANEH, which has led the struggle for years amongst Honduras's Garífuna population and has worked closely with Berta and COPINH for many years. The following is their statement on the purpose of the mobilization and encampment that just began. [Original en español]

Why we mobilize with Berta today

Berta is not dead. Her spirit lives in all of the rivers of Honduras and the world that are threatened by a backwards idea of development that favors the blood-thirsty political and business elite, whose antiquated vision calls the death of rivers “clean energy.” We have walked alongside Berta on many paths and the struggle to defend our territories and cultures in the face of the devastating aggression of neoliberalism has been one of our most important bonds. They want to convert the natural resources on indigenous lands into commodities to be auctioned off, without any consent from our peoples, who they see as just statistics that can be dismissed.

Honduras since the coup d’état has become a political laboratory, where the ruling elite have used hideous techniques of social containment and control to get rid of us and maintain their fierce grip on power, making use of the intentionally-provoked violence and bloodshed that is embedded in our society. The execution of Berta is a desperate act by a villainous government that has been unable to neutralize her spirit of struggle or defense of the Lenca people’s territory from the bankers and business people who traffic in death.

Berta’s struggle was rooted in the defense of the Lenca territory and culture and the empowerment of women.

The central axis of her activities revolved around the Right to Prior, Free and Informed Consultation. It is a right that has been scorned by the various government administrations, which haven’t thought twice about their attempts to give away territory and put our cultures up on the auction block.

The assassination of Berta has corroborated her own denunciations of the persecution that the “authorities” and executives of the DESA Corporation carried out against her for years. Now it seems that her death is being used as a pretext to intensify the strategy aimed at destroying COPINH and annihilating its leaders.

We Demand:
  • An exhaustive investigation by an independent international panel into the assassination of Berta Cáceres
  • The immediate withdrawal of the DESA Corporation from Lenca territory and the cancelling of all concessions for hydroelectric dams, mining projects, extraction of hydrocarbons, and Special Development Regions on indigenous lands
  • Demilitarization of indigenous lands
  • Unconditional freedom for our brother and compañero Gustavo Castro
  • Immediate passage of the Law for Prior, Free and Informed Consultation, created by the Indigenous People’s Observatory with direct collaboration by Berta Cáceres
  • Nullification of unilateral decrees regarding extractive and hydroelectric projects in indigenous territories
  • Re-working of the Alliance for Prosperity, which is a false solution to the migration conflict
  • Recognition of COPINH as the organization responsible for the oversight of its territories.
Berta lives on and the struggle continues.

Sambo Creek, March 17th, 2016
Fraternal Black Organization of Honduras, OFRANEH

Continua la movilización de los pueblosEl pueblo Garifuna realiza ceremonia en las cercanías de casa presidencial.

Posted by Red Nacional de Defensoras de Derechos Humanos en Honduras on Thursday, March 17, 2016

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Action at Honduran Consulate in Chicago for Berta Cáceres / Manifestación frente consulado hondureño de Chicago para Berta

Video and photos of 3/7/2016 action for Berta at Honduran consulate of Chicago

Video y fotos de manifestación frente consulado hondureño de Chicago el 7 de marzo, 2016


The Civil Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras COPINH: Five days after the assassination of Berta Cáceres.

[Español original al final]
A day before International Women’s Day, faced with the situation of harassment, criminalization and persecution that we are going through as an organization, which led on March 2nd to the femicide assassination of Berta Cáceres our general coordinator. We forcefully condemn this terrible crime that affects indigenous society, civil organizations, the women’s struggle, the struggle for live and above all the struggle of the Lenca people.

Thousands march at funeral for Berta Cáceres following her assassination
We invite all national and international organizations during your International Women’s Day mobilizations to dedicate your protests and marches to our sister Bertha Cáceres, as a way to express solidarity with our organization and family.

We re-affirm our position against patriarchy, imperialism, capitalism and racism which defined the life of our sister and the organization she belongs to. We don’t want this death to be just another statistic; it was a femicide with a political motive because of her defense of our territory!

We thank national and international solidarity for the support that you have shown us. And we further call on you to carry out actions on this day to demand justice; to emphasize that this action was a femicide carried out by the power structure (the government, corporations and army). We invite you to bring our sister Bertha Cáceres along in spirit with ceremonies, candles, flowers, photos or other artistic and cultural expressions that demonstrate how strongly we remember her and continue to struggle.

We demand that the government sign an agreement with the Inter-American Human Rights Commission to create an international commission of independent investigators around the case of Berta Cáceres, due to the inability to guarantee a transparent and credible process.

We demand the immediate and definitive cancellation of the hydroelectric, mining and other extractive concessions and operations that plunder the Lenca territory, especially the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project in Río Blanco being developed by DESA.

We demand an end to the criminalization and harassment of COPINH members, the demilitarization of the territory and the dissolution of the death squads.

For us the demand for justice doesn’t mean obeying or legitimizing the Honduran judicial system, whose chains of corruption support transnational corporations and respond to foreign interests, not the needs of the people. Rather, we want transparent investigative processes about Berta’s assassination, punishment for the intellectual and material perpetrators, definitive suspension of the projects of death, and resolution of the demands of the indigenous peoples.

With the ancestral strength of Mota, Etempica and Lempira, her rebel spirit will always accompany with us.

Given in La Esperanza, state of Intibucá on March 7th, 2016.


Español original:


El Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares e Indígenas de Honduras COPINH: cinco días después del asesinato de Berta Cáeres.

A un día de la celebración internacional de la mujer, frente a la situación de hostigamiento, criminalización y persecución que atravesamos como organización, la cual desembocó este 2 de marzo en el asesinato feminicida de Berta Cáseres nuestra coordinadora general. Condenamos enérgicamente este terrible crimen que afecta a la sociedad indígena, a las organizaciones civiles, a la lucha de las mujeres, a la lucha por la vida y principalmente al pueblo Lenca.

Invitamos a todas las organizaciones nacionales e internacionales en las movilizaciones de conmemoración del día internacional de la mujer a dedicar las manifestaciones y marchas a nuestra compañera Bertha Cáceres, como forma de expresión de solidaridad con nuestra organización y familia.

Reafirmamos la posición anti-patriarcal, anti-imperialista, anti-capitalista y anti-racista que marco la vida de nuestra compañera y de la organización a la que pertenece. No queremos que esta muerte sea un número más en las estadísticas; ¡fue un feminicidio por causas políticas, por la defensa del territorio!

Agradecemos la solidaridad internacional y nacional por el apoyo que nos han manifestado. Del mismo modo, los convocamos a que en el marco de este día realicemos acciones para exigir justicia; hacer hincapie en que este acto es un feminicido realizado por las estructuras de poder (gobierno, empresas, ejercito).
invitamos a convocar el espíritu de nuestra compañera Bertha Cáceres con ceremonias, portando velas, flores, fotos u otras expresiones artísticas y culturales que demuestren la fuerza con la que la recordamos y seguimos luchando.

Exígimos que el gobierno firme un convenio con la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos para crear una comisión internacional de investigadores independientes del caso de Berta Cáceres,  debido a la falta de garantías para un proceso transparente y fiable.

Exigimos la cancelación inmediata y definitiva de las concesiones y operación de los proyectos hidroeléctricos, mineros y extractivistas de despojo en territorio Lenca, en especial el proyecto Hidroeléctrico Agua Zarca en Río Blanco desarrollado por la empresa DESA.

Exigimos finalizar la criminalización y el hostigamiento hacia los miembros del COPINH, la desmilitarización del territorio y la disolución del los escuadrones de la muerte.

Para nosotr@s el exigir justicia no significa obedecer o legitimar al aparato judicial de Honduras; las cadenas de corrupción y apoyo a empresas transnacionales, políticas extranjeras que no obedecen a las necesidades del pueblo. Si no, claridad en los procesos de investigación del asesinato de Berta, condena a los culpables intelectuales y materiales, suspensión definitiva de los proyectos de muerte, resolución de las demandas de los pueblos originarios.

Con la fuerza ancestral de Mota, Etempica y Lempira, su espíritu rebelde nos acompañará siempre.

Dado en la ciudad de La Esperanza, departamento de Intibucá a los 7 días del mes de marzo del 2016.

escuchenos en vivo:
fb:     Copinh Intibucá

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Berta Caceres !Presente! - Statement from La Voz de los de Abajo

[English follows]

nuestr@s querid@s compañer@s del COPINH,
la Resistencia Hondureña,
Al pueblo digno hondureño,
A los movimientos populares de todo el mundo
A la comunidad internacional en general,
tod@s l@s que sueñan con un mundo mejor:

El mundo acaba de perder una de las grandes luchadoras en la historia, no solo de Honduras, sino del mundo entero. La voz de Berta Cáceres era, es y siempre será una voz que inspire tenacidad, amor al pueblo, y esperanza. Berta siempre usaba su voz para ampliar las voces de l@s demás, de la gente humilde, de la gente pobre, del pueblo Lenca, de todos los pueblos indígenas y afrodescendientes, de las mujeres, de la gente de diversidad sexual, de las obreras y los obreros, de las campesinas y los campesinos, de las explotadas y los explotados, de la juventud, del pueblo en resistencia, de tod@squienes soñamos con un mundo más justo.

Compartimos en lo más profundo de nuestras almas el dolor inmenso que sienten en estos momentos tan difíciles nuestr@scompañer@s hondureñ@s del COPINH, la familia hermosa y luchadora de Berta y tod@s l@s que tuvieron el gran privilegio de conocerla en algún momentoBerta tocaba corazones en todo el mundo. En cada rincón de este planeta tierra, este planeta que Berta defendía con todo su esfuerzo y, finalmente, con su vida misma, el ejemplo, la voz, la memoria, la inspiración, la enseñanza, el amor de Berta Cáceres están presentes, hoy y siempre.

Como La Voz de los de Abajo, una organización internacional de derechos humanos con sede en Chicago y con más de 15 años de historia de acompañamiento los movimientos populares hondureños, responsabilizamos al gobierno de Hondurasal gobierno de los Estados Unidos y la empresa DESA y sus financiadores internacionales por el asesinato de Berta. 

El gobierno hondureño es responsable por su falta de voluntad para investigar las constantes amenazas de muerte en contra de Berta, por su indiferencia ante las medidas cautelares otorgadas a Berta por la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos, por su participación en la campaña de difamación y satanización que se realizó en contra de Berta en los medios de comunicación, y por su colaboración con y apoyo a la empresa DESA en su proyecto nefasto de construir una represa hidroeléctrica en el Río Gualcarque a pesar de la oposición de las comunidades indígenas Lencas. Somos testigos de esa colaboración, vimos con nuestros propios ojos la gran presencia del ejército hondureño y su cercanía y colaboración con los guardias de la empresa DESA en la comunidad de Río Blanco.

El gobierno estadounidense es responsable por su continuo financiamiento del ejército hondureño, por su historia larga y criminal de entrenar a militares hondureños asesinos en la Escuela de las Américas, por su papel fundamental en financiar, defender y asegurar la consolidación del golpe de estado y el ambiente de represión e impunidad que este conllevó

La empresa DESA y sus financiadores internacionales son indudablemente responsable por el acto material del asesinato. Sus empleados dijeron descaradamente, en innumerables ocasiones, que iban a asesinar a Berta por su liderazgo en la lucha en contra de la destrucción ambiental y cultural que representaría la construcción del proyecto hidroeléctrico Agua Zarca en Río Blanco.

Berta vivirá no solo en los corazones, sino en las acciones de todos los pueblos en resistencia del mundo y especialmente en su querida Honduras y en su querido pueblo Lenca en particular. Si los malos de arriba piensan que con el asesinato de Berta podrán acabar con la lucha del pueblo Lenca, se equivocanterriblemente. Su voz se multiplicará. Su ejemplo se multiplicará. Su inspiración se multiplicará. Ella sembró miles de semillas con su persistencia, con su risa, con su tenacidad, con su esperanza, con su visión de un mundo sin patriarcado, sin explotación capitalista y racismo, con su sueño de un mundo liberado, con su profunda fe en el triunfo inevitable de la lucha popular. Se profundizará la lucha, se profundizará la solidaridadinternacionalse profundizará la ola de indignación, se profundizará la determinación y dedicación del pueblo Lenca, del pueblo hondureño en resistencia y de los pueblos del mundo que los acompañamos.

Estaremos informando sobre los próximos pasos para mostrar solidaridad internacional muy pronto.

¡Berta Cáceres presente!
¡Que viva el COPINH!
¡Que viva la resistencia!
¡Que vivan las luchas populares! 
¡Sangre de mártires, semilla de libertad!
Nunca nos olvidaremos de usted, compañera Berta Cáceres.

Desde Chicago, Estados Unidos,
La Voz de los de Abajo

To our dear sisters and brothers of COPINH,
To the Honduran Resistance,
To the dignified people of Honduras,
To the people’s movements around the world
To the International community in general,
To everyone who dreams of a better world:

The world just lost one of the greatest freedom fighters not just in the history of Honduras but in the whole world. The voice of Berta Cáceres was, is and always will be a voice that inspires tenacity, love for the people, and hope. Berta always used her voice to amplify the voices of others, of the downtrodden, of the poor, of the Lenca people, of all indigenous and afro-descendant peoples, of women, of the LGBT community, of workers and peasants, of the exploited, of the youth, of the people in resistance, of all of us who dream of a more just world. 

We share in the depths of our soul the immense pain felt by our Honduran comrades from COPINH, by Berta’s beautiful and resilient family, and by everyone who had the great privilege of meeting her at one time or another. Berta touched hearts around the world. In every corner of this planet earth, the planet that she defended with all of her energy and finally with her life itself, the example, the voice, the memory, the inspiration, the teachings, the love of Berta Cáceres are present today and always. 

As La Voz de los de Abajo, an international human rights organization based in Chicago and with more than 15 years of history accompanying Honduran social movements, we hold responsible the government of Honduras, the government of the United States, and the DESA corporation and its financial backers for Berta’s murder

The Honduran government is responsible for its unwillingness to investigate the constant death threats against Berta, for its indifference regarding the protective measures extended to Berta by the Inter-American Human Rights Commission, for its participation in the campaign of defamation and character assassination carried out against Berta in the Honduran press, and for its collaboration with and support for the DESA corporation and its nefarious project of building a hydroelectric dam on the Gualcarque River despite the opposition of the indigenous Lenca communities. We are direct witnesses to that collaboration, having seen with our own eyes the tremendous presence of the Honduran army and its closeness and collaboration with DESA’s private security in the Río Blanco community.

The U.S. government is responsible for its continued financing of the Honduran army, for its long and criminal history of training Honduran military assassins at the School of the Americas, for its essential role in financing, defending and assuring the consolidation of the coup d’état in Honduras and the environment of repression and impunity that it ushered in. 

The DESA corporation and its financial backers are undoubtedly responsible for the assassination itself. Its employees have said shamelessly and on numerous occasions that they would kill Berta for her leadership in the struggle against the environmental and cultural destruction represented by the building of the Agua Zarca hydroelectric dam in Río Blanco. 

Berta will live not just in the hearts but in the actions of all the peoples in resistance around the world and especially in her beloved Honduras and her beloved Lenca indigenous community. If the powerful and evil think that by killing Berta they can end the struggle of the Lenca people, they are terribly mistaken. Her voice will multiplyHer example will multiplyHer inspiration will multiply. She sowed thousands of seeds with her persistence, with her laughter, with her tenacity, with her hope, with her vision of a world free from patriarchy, capitalist exploitation and racism, with her dream of a liberated world, with her profound faith in the inevitable triumph of the people’s struggle. The struggle will deepen, international solidarity will deepen, the wave of indignation will deepen, the determination and dedication of the Lenca people, of the Honduran resistance and of the people of the world who accompany them will deepen. 

We will be releasing information on next steps for demonstrating International solidarity very soon. 

Berta Cáceres lives on!
Long live COPINH!
Long live the resistance!
Long live the people’s struggles
Blood of martyrs, seed of liberation!
We will never forget you, comrade Berta Cáceres.

From Chicago, USA
La Voz de los de Abajo

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