2017: Honduras: Jairo López

Jairo López, a Honduran journalist, is being target of a smear campaign. López is known for his investigative journalism. The Writers in Prison Committee believes the smear campaign is in response to an unfavorable report showing the President of the National Congress being attacked by protestors at a political gathering in Apacilagua.

 

Señor Julián Pacheco
Secretaria de Estado en el Despacho de  Seguridad
Aldea el Ocotal
Antiguo Local de la Academia Nacional de Policia ANAPO
Tegucigalpa
Honduras

1st of March 2017

Your Excellency,

 

The Norwegian WiPC – Writers in Prison Committee – is seriously concerned for the safety of PEN Honduras member and journalist Jairo López who is facing threats following a smear campaign.

López, who hosts TV News program El Informador for the local television channel Canal 21 in Choluteca, southern Honduras, is known for his investigative journalism. According to López,  a smear campaign against him began on February 7th 2017 when a piece was posted on social media claiming that the Public Prosecutor had issued a warrant for his arrest for being the leader of a local criminal gang and an emissary of a well-known drug trafficker. The Norwegian Writers in Prison Committee calls on the Honduran authorities to ensure the safety of Jairo López and to investigate the threats against him as a matter of urgency.

Claims such as those made against López not only damage his reputation as a journalist, but they also pose a serious threat to both him and his family. Since the video was posted, Lopez reports receiving threats and men on motorcycles have been seen circling his house.

We believe the smear campaign is in response to an unfavorable report on El Informador showing the President of the National Congress being attacked by protestors at a political gathering in Apacilagua, southern Honduras.  López is believed to be targeted as he is the director of the TV news program responsible for broadcasting the video.

We would welcome your comments on this matter.

Yours sincerely,
Øivind Hånes

WiPC Norway

COPY: Ministry of Security in Honduras; National Human Rights Ombudsman in Hondura; Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

2016 Honduras: Cesario Alejandro Félix Padilla Figueroa

Norsk PENs komité for fengslede forfattere krever full rettssikkerhet for Cesario Alejandro Félix Padilla Figueroa, studentleder og medlem av PEN Honduras.

Abogado Óscar Fernando Chinchilla Banegas
Fiscal General de la República
Ministerio Público
Lomas del Guijarro
Avenida República Dominicana
Edifico Lomas Plaza II
Tegucigalpa
Honduras

Dr. Roberto Herrera Cáceres
Comisionado Nacional de los Derechos Humanos (CONADEH)
Colonia Florencia Norte
Boulevar Suyapa
Tegucigalpa Honduras

Dear Sirs,
PEN International, Norwegian PEN and The Norwegian Writers in Prison Committee are concerned to hear of the arrest of PEN Honduras member Cesario Alejandro Félix Padilla Figueroa on June 7th 2016, alongside five other students at the National Autonomous University of Honduras in the Honduran capital Tegucigalpa.

PEN International and Norwegian PEN urge the Honduran authorities to drop all charges against Cesario Alejandro Félix Padilla Figueroa, whom PEN International believes is being prosecuted for exercising his right to freedom of expression and assembly by peacefully participating in and observing student protests, Furthermore, we urge the authorities to protect Padilla and to investigate any unlawful surveillance of him. PEN call on the government not to criminalise social protest or use the justice system to generate fear, censorship and silence among journalists, writers and others in Honduras.

Yours sincerely,
Hilde Rød-Larsen
Member of Writers in Prison Committee
Norwegian PEN

COPY: The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The Consulate General of Honduras in Norway

2015 Honduras: Julio Ernesto Alvarado

Abogado Abraham Alvarenga Urbina
State’s Attorney General’s Office (Procuradoría General de la República)
Lomas del Guijarro Sur
Boulevard San Juan Bosco
Edificio Centauro
Tegucigalpa M.D.C.

Honduras

Oslo, November 20, 2015

Dear Attorney General,

Norwegian PEN is deeply concerned about the Honduran state’s continuing failure to implement precautionary measures (No. 196-14) granted to journalist Julio Ernesto Alvarado by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).

We are shocked and dismayed by the message sent by the actions of the Honduran state in this case: a fundamental lack of respect both for the right to freedom of expression and for the IACHR itself, to whose authority Honduras willingly submitted when it ratified the American Convention on Human Rights in 1977.

We therefore ask your office to comply in a meaningful way, and without further delay, with your legal obligation to implement Mr Alvarado’s precautionary measures by ensuring that the sentence and work ban imposed on him are suspended and pending review by the IACHR.

Yours sincerely,

Ragnar Aalbu
Member of Norwegian PEN
COPY:
The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

2013 Honduras: Dina Meza

Norway, 15. November 2013

Ana Pineda
Minister of Justice and Human Rights
Secretaría de Estado en los Despachos de Justicia y Derechos Humanos de la República de Honduras
Col. Lomas del Mayab
Ave. República de Costa Rica
Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Email: contacto@sjdh.gob.hn

Maria Mercedes Bustillo
Coordinator
Special Prosecutor’s office
(Fiscalía de Derechos Humanos)
Colonia Lomas del Guijarro
Edificio Plaza II, primer piso
Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Email: merceditasbustillo@yahoo.es

Maria Mercedes Bustillo
Coordinator
Special Prosecutor’s office
(Fiscalía de Derechos Humanos)
Colonia Lomas del Guijarro
Edificio Plaza II, primer piso
Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Email: merceditasbustillo@yahoo.es

Copies to:
Ramón Custodio López
Comisionado Nacional de los Derechos Humanos
Oficina Central
Colonia Florencia Norte
Boulevar Suyapa
Tegucigalpa, Honduras 11101
Email: custodiolopez@conadeh.hn

Your Excellencies,

I write to you as the chair of the Writers in Prison Committee of Norwegian PEN, the local section of PEN International, the writer`s
and free expression organisation with 140 centres in over 100 countries around the world, including Honduras and many other countries in your region.

Norwegian PEN is urging that all reports of attacks, threats, harassment and surveillance of journalists, including Dina Meza, be promptly and thoroughly investigated and that anyone found responsible is brought to justice. Dina Meza, an awardwinning journalist, human rights defender and author, has been the victim of harassment and threats since 2006 which have not been properly investigated, while national protection mechanisms for journalists are ineffective. PEN International believe that she is targeted for exercising her right to free expression and that her physical security is at risk.

Norwegian PEN calls for Dina Meza to be granted adequate protection from harm, and to provide the Special Prosecutor for Human Rights Defenders with sufficient resources so that the office can carry out its mandate.

Yours sincerely,

Trine Kleven
Chair, Writers in Prison Committee of Norwegian PEN
Wergelandsveien 29, 0167 Oslo, Norway. www.norskpen.no