Church solidarity with Hondurans demanding justice and human rights

The leadership of the Honduran church presenting the 2019 general assembly statement in front of the Martin Luther bust in Tegucigalpa’s public square.  Photo: Roger Rivas
The leadership of the Honduran church presenting the 2019 general assembly statement in front of the Martin Luther bust in Tegucigalpa’s public square. Photo: Roger Rivas

Lutheran church supports protests against privatization of health and education

(LWI) - The Christian Lutheran Church of Honduras (ICLH) has declared its solidarity with the “clamor of the Honduran people” for better living conditions amid a social and political crisis characterized by attacks on health and education programs, justice and human rights.

The crisis has triggered a series of massive public demonstrations across the country with the government responding by deploying the army. This move resulted in two protesters being killed and another 20 being injured in June.

In a statement signed by Rev. Rolando Antonio Ortez, president of the ICLH, the Honduran church stated unequivocally, “As a historical church we stand in solidarity and accompany the Platform for the Defence of Education and Health.”

In the 21 June statement following its 31st General Assembly, the church said: “Once and for all, any attempt to privatize health and education should be eliminated, because it is a right of humanity.”

The church condemned government forces for intimidating demonstrators and for criminalizing the protests, while decrying the lack of medicine and other supplies, which has led to many people fleeing the country.

The killing of people exercising their right to protest is an outrage to the human rights of defenceless people.
Statement from the Christian Lutheran Church of Honduras

The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) member church said, “the killing of people exercising their right to protest is an outrage to the human rights of defenseless people.”

The ICLH noted the Honduran government’s unwillingness to dialogue and the constant violation of the country’s constitution was a pretext “to perpetuate itself in power or shield itself from justice.” The church expressed concern over growing unemployment, which is increasing migration of individuals and entire families towards North America and countries in Europe.

At the same time, the Regional Human Rights Monitoring and Analysis Team in Central America, which includes the LWF member Lutheran Costa Rican Church, said the imposition of reforms without concern for the wishes of the people “has generated a climate of social and political crisis in various places in Honduras.”

The human rights’ monitoring team called for an end to the “irresponsible actions by the government,” adding, such attacks “violate the physical integrity of people, as well as the lack of freedom to demand their rights and academic autonomy.”

 

LWF in Latin America and the Caribbean