Yunior Alexander Oyuel and fellow students were detained on September 8 while exercising their legitimate right to peaceful protest at UNAH University. We urge the Honduran government to answer international calls for justice and drop the unfair prosecution against Yunior Alexander Oyuela and the other students.
STOP THE PROSECUTION OF THE STUDENTS OF UNIVERSIDAD NACIONAL AUTÓNOMA DE HONDURAS
September 15, 2017
Dear Presidency of the Republic of Honduras
Dear General Prosecutor´s Office of Honduras
Dear National Human Rights Commissioner
Friends of the Earth Asia Pacific (FoE APac) is the regional collective of Friends of the Earth International members in the Asia and Pacific countries. We represent grassroots environmental justice organisations and act to amplify the voices of local communities affected by the neoliberal development paradigm.
We, the undersigned organisations collectively representing FoE APac denounce the detention and prosecution process initiated in the past few days in Tegucigalpa, against the students of Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Honduras (UNAH). We know this prosecution process was launched after the students, among them Yunior Alexander Oyuela, a member of Movimiento Madre Tierra / Friends of the Earth Honduras, were detained on September 8 while exercising their legitimate right to peaceful protest at said University, in opposition to privatization and in defense of public education in the country.
As environmental organisations working for environmental, social and gender justice, we utterly reject the prosecution of these Honduran social activists. We are deeply concerned over the systematic practice of criminalisation of dissent that violates the collective rights of the people and their human rights, and reflects a persecutory and punitive military policing policy.
We consider that the detention of and charges against our colleague Yunior Alexander and the other UNAH students are violations of the rights of the Honduran people. This further entrenches the image of Honduras at the global level as a country with no safeguards for those who defend human rights, territories, and the right to a dignified life for peasant, Indigenous, Garifuna and urban communities.
We urge the Honduran government and authorities at the UNAH to answer the calls for justice at international level in response to these detentions, ending all forms of persecution, including judicial persecution, against Yunior Alexander Oyuela and the other students. We consider that the path towards the resolution of conflicts cannot be preempted by the permanent threat to freedom, as a way of intimidating voices democratically demanding a country built on the foundation of justice for its people.
We appreciate the attention provided to this message and trust the Honduran institutions will unconditionally drop all the charges against Yunior Alexander and the students who have been prosecuted, and that their human rights will be respected.
Member groups from FoE Asia Pacific
FoE Australia, Australia
Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), Bangladesh
Centre for Environmental Justice (CEJ), Sri Lanka
FoE Japan, Japan
Korea Federation for Environmental Movements (KFEM), South Korea
Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM), Malaysia
Legal Rights and Natural Resources Centre – Kasama sa Kalikasan (LRCKSK), Philippines
Centre for Environmental Law and Community Rights (CELCOR), Papua New Guinea
Forum for the Protection of Public Interest (Pro Public), Nepal
Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (WALHI), Indonesia
Palestinian Environmental NGOs Network (PENGON), Palestine