Editorial

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Margarita Murillo: Another Victim of Neoliberalism?

Aug 31, 2014

Margarita Murillo: Another Victim of Neoliberalism?

The killing of peasant activist Margarita Murillo on Tuesday raises questions about the motive behind her murder. At the moment, all that is known is that she was shot on her land in the village of El Planón (municipality of Villanueva) by three individuals wearing ski-masks. As the recently-named president of the Asociativa Campesinos de Producción Las Ventanas (Window Production Peasants Association), Mrs. Murillo had apparently been involved in negotiating a land dispute between her group (consisting of at least 23 peasant families) and a large landowner (or several... Read more

The Impending Battle on Presidential Reelection in Honduras

Aug 28, 2014

The Impending Battle on Presidential Reelection in Honduras

It is widely believed in Honduras that President Juan Orlando Hernández will call for a public referendum within the next two years (probably before the primary elections in late-2016) to reform Article 374, which prohibits the reelection of a president. Okay, bear with me here, because it gets a little complicated. Article 374 also states that "in no case" can it or Article 373 be reformed. Article 373 states that any reform to the Constitution requires a two-thirds vote by Congress during an ordinary session... Read more

Is the PAC All Talk?

Aug 26, 2014

Is the PAC All Talk?

The Anti-Corruption Party (PAC) in Honduras yesterday announced that it would soon make known its official views on the performance thus far of the government of President Juan Orlando Hernández. Representative Fátima Mena, who heads the 13-member PAC delegation in the Honduran Congress said that a diverse team of experts is working on a comprehensive study that will offer proposals and solutions to the economic and social crisis, specifically with regard to unemployment, migration, crime and violence, the revitalization of the agricultural sector, incentivizing foreign... Read more

Culture

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Frida, Maya Language and Joya de Cerén

Aug 30, 2014

Frida, Maya Language and Joya de Cerén

Ancestral heritage needs to reinvent itself, or die. Design, with its ability to synthesize and develop, interpret and create realities, is a powerful tool for representing and reviving our past. For these purposes, Frida Larios has created a "new Maya language." The past is not a "sacred" place. The gods did not inspire the creators of the Temple of the Great Jaguar in Tikal, and the sculptors of the stelae at Copán. Neither artisans at Joya de Cerén. The "sacred" becomes untouchable and just an... Read more

Dead Weight

Aug 28, 2014

Dead Weight

There is here a darkness. Lying like a shadow on this land.   At night sometimes we used to tell ghost stories, sitting around when the power was out with a candle flickering on the table before us. But the darkest story, the story that really made us tremble, was the story of this place. Because it was true. Because there is a darkness here. An evil. For by what other word should it be known than evil when mothers lose their sons to killing or to... Read more

Garifuna Risk All to Flee Ancestral Homelands

Aug 26, 2014

Garifuna Risk All to Flee Ancestral Homelands

A horse grazes in the Travesía town cemetery, on the Caribbean coast of Honduras. Some of the tombs shine in the sun with new tiles, while others are marked by little more than rusted crosses. On one such grave -- a stark box of bare concrete -- lies a white wreath, which is turning brown in the sun. This is Catrín Bernárdez's grave, the final resting place of his American dream. Bernárdez, 43, was Garifuna. This Afro-Caribbean ethnic community, of mixed Amerindian and African descent, is scattered across Central America, but is centered in Honduras, where an estimated... Read more


Opinion

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Mauricio Villeda Opts Out

Aug 28, 2014

Mauricio Villeda Opts Out

On Tuesday, the president of the Executive Central Council of the Liberal Party (CCEPL), Mauricio Villeda, said that he would not run again for the Presidency of Honduras in 2017. Mr. Villeda, who represented the Liberal Party in last year's presidential election, only managed to attract 20.3 percent of the popular vote -- which placed him in third place, behind the National Party's Juan Orlando Hernández (35.9 percent) and the Libre Party's Xiomara Castro de Zelaya (28.8 percent). "As I have said before, I will not seek the candidacy for the presidency. My... Read more

Sure Enough, the End of Bipartisan Politics

Aug 25, 2014

Sure Enough, the End of Bipartisan Politics

On June 27, 2011, Patricia Rodas, who served as the Foreign Minister under the Zelaya government (2006-2009) in Honduras, predicted that the advent of the proposed new political party known as the Broad Popular Resistance Front (FARP) would mark the end of Honduras' two-party system in the next presidential election scheduled for 2013. According to Ms. Rodas, the creation of the FARP would represent "the beginning of the end of the bipartisanship that the oligarchy has maintained for more than 100 years". Read more

El Carretillazo: Wo So Much Fuss Over Such a Little Crime?

Aug 24, 2014

El Carretillazo: Wo So Much Fuss Over Such a Little Crime?

One of the most common rebuttals by supporters of former President Manuel Zelaya Rosales to the admission by former Minister of the Presidency Enrique Flores Lanza earlier this month that he had authorized the withdrawal of Lps 50 million (US$2.5 million) from the Central Bank of Honduras just days before the coup against Mr. Zelaya on June 28, 2009 is that the amount of money involved is only a pittance compared to the Lps 7 billion (US$350 million) allegedly stolen by the former head of the Honduran Social Security Institute... Read more

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International

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The Drug War and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Mexico's Hidden Epidemic

Aug 24, 2014

The Drug War and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Mexico's Hidden Epidemic

In recent years, the Mexican drug war has consistently made headlines for its appalling levels of violence and ever-increasing death count; with a figure approaching 70,000 people killed since 2006. Previously, violence in Mexico had largely been associated with drug trafficking and was concentrated in a handful of regions along key smuggling routes, especially near the US border. However, under the Felipe Calderón administration (2006-2012), Mexico’s drug cartels faced rising pressure from state security forces,... Read more

Why Latin America is Standing Up to Israel on Gaza

Aug 19, 2014

Why Latin America is Standing Up to Israel on Gaza

Since the Israeli offensive against Gaza began, images of Palestinian children murdered in their homes and schools and bombs exploding in neighborhoods have outraged people around the globe. Many governments have followed the United States, making empty declarations against the violence, as if the death dealing were equal and not overwhelmingly of Palestinian civilians killed by Israeli bombs and bullets. But as the US government backpedals to reconcile its unconditional support of Israel with basic principles of human... Read more

IFC Warned of Systemic Safeguards Failures in Honduras

Aug 15, 2014

For the second time this year, an internal auditor has criticised the World Bank’s private sector investment agency over dealings in Honduras, and is warning that similar problems are likely being experienced elsewhere. The investigation found that the bank’s private sector investment agency, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), took on a significant stake in a Honduran bank but undertook “insufficient measures” to assess that institution’s own investments. These included at least one company involved in... Read more

National

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The Killing of Peasant Activist Margarita Murillo

Aug 30, 2014

Margarita Murillo was shot and killed early Tuesday morning in the village of El Planón, located within the municipality of Villanueva in northern Honduras. She was walking to tend a plot of land near her home when she was confronted by three men wearing ski-masks. Her body was found lying beneath a mango tree by members of the Asociativa Campesinos de Producción Las Ventanas (Window Production Peasants Association), made up of at least 23 peasant families who have been involved in a legal dispute over properties in the area. Read more

Police and Gangs Behind Abuse of LGBTI Community

Aug 26, 2014

The principal victimizers of Honduras' LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex) community are police and criminal gangs, according to a new report by local rights groups, highlighting how discrimination against minorities relates to the security dynamic. A new report compiled by Honduras' National AIDS Forum, LGBTI Rainbow Association, Amazonas Collective, and Progressio/Latina, which was presented August 21, identified the country's police as responsible for the most cases of aggressions and rights violations against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community, reported EFE. Read more

Honduras Seizes Luxury Properties in Move Against Valle Drug Family

Aug 20, 2014

Authorities in Honduras have seized 52 properties belonging to one of the country's premier drug trafficking groups -- the Valle family -- in a move that could represent the beginning of a larger assault on the powerful clan. On August 18, authorities seized properties belonging to siblings Luis Alfonso, Miguel Arnulfo, Digna and Deisy Valle Valle in the departments of Copán and Cortés. The operation involved over 200 police, prosecutors and personnel from the Administrative Office of Seized Assets (OABI), reported La Prensa. The properties included various residences and terrains, five estates, a farm, a hardware store, a cattle ranching business and a cafe.... Read more

Volunteerism

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The Opening Day of the Sustainable Honduras Conference in Copán Ruinas

Aug 28, 2014

The Opening Day of the Sustainable Honduras Conference in Copán Ruinas

The 15th annual Sustainable Honduras Conference is taking place in Copán Ruinas, Honduras on September 24-26. We have many organizations who work on community development, education, youth violence prevention, microfinance, healthcare, water and sanitation, agricultural and environmental programs in Honduras signed up to attend. The theme of this year’s conference is "Collective Impact," and we have a very exciting program in place. If you are interested in coming to the conference, please note that our... Read more

Project: Caring for the Elderly of La Ceiba

Aug 18, 2014

Project: Caring for the Elderly of La Ceiba

Responding to the need to care for the impoverished and homeless elderly people in their community, a group of women in La Ceiba have formed an association called El Perpetuo Socorro (Perpetual Aid). Their goal is to raise money to build a new Home for the Elderly of La Ceiba. Unfortunately, there are many ederly men and women in our city who have nowhere to go and no one to care for them. They amble through... Read more

US Army Facilitates Pediatrics in Disasters Course for Honduran Physicians

Aug 12, 2014

Joint Task Force-Bravo's Medical Element hosted the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Pediatrics in Disasters (PEDS) course to train Honduran pediatricians about the healthcare needs for children in disaster preparedness and emergency response. The course subjects included planning and triage for disaster scenarios, pediatric trauma treatment, toxic exposure, and incident control command procedures. Pediatricians from all over Honduras traveled to Soto Cano Air base to attend the course held August 7-9, 2014.  Read more

Money & Investment

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IMF Credit Deal May Ride on Enee

Aug 29, 2014

The government of President Juan Orlando Hernández in Honduras will commence negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on September 2 to obtain access to approximately US$220 million in credit at favorable rates of interest. The money would be used to provide liquidity to the Hernández administration so it can better meet its budgetary obligations. Without this infusion of cash, the administration will continue to have a difficult time paying tens of thousands of public employees and generally keeping the government in operation. Read more

InterContinental Hotels Group Opens Holiday Inn Express Hotel in Tegucigalpa

Aug 17, 2014

InterContinental Hotels Group announced on Friday the opening of the new-build, 108-room Holiday Inn Express hotel in Tegucigalpa. The hotel is located in the heart of the capital city's new financial and commercial district of Plaza San Rafael, and near the country’s major financial institutions, including BAC Honduras, Banco Davivienda and BCIE (Central American Bank for Economic Integration). The Holiday Inn Express Tegucigalpa hotel is also connected to some of the main city thoroughfares such as Boulevard Morazán and is conveniently accessible to a variety of restaurants. Read more

Congress Approves US$100 Million Loan With Credit Suisse

Aug 08, 2014

The National Congress of Honduras on Tuesday voted in favor of authorizing the Ministry of Finance to negotiate and sign a US$100 million credit deal with Credit Suisse AG of Switzerland. According to Minister of Finance Hugo Castillo, the loan will serve to convert an expensive short-term internal debt to an external one at a lower interest rate and under more flexible payment terms. "This is not a new loan, nor will it mean an increase in the [fiscal] deficit. It is simply a move to change the internal financing structure, but at no time will it... Read more


Honduras Weekly  seeks to promote a thoughtful, civil, and balanced exchange about news, events, and people in Honduras (mostly). The idea is to be receptive to everyone's opinions, regardless of philosophical lean. Our underlying assumption is that truth is not usually absolute. In the end, we can always agree to disagree. Meanwhile, we'd like to listen to as many people as may come our way, and encourage a conversation. We are a privately-owned, independent Honduran newspaper, with no government connections (national or foreign). We are solely responsible to our readers. Honduras Weekly  is updated daily in English, with an emphasis on stories we sense have the greatest overall impact on Honduras each week. Write to us at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


 

Travel

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Life in Copán: World-Class Events and Weekend Getaways

Aug 27, 2014

Life in Copán: World-Class Events and Weekend Getaways

With the recent success of the Globe theater’s production of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet  in Copán Ruinas on August 16, the town has once again shown itself to be a unique stage for social, educational and cultural events. More than 500 people turned out to see the London-based troup’es round-the-world tour to celebrate the Bard’s 450th birthday. Copán Ruinas’ old Fort (“El Cuartel”) was turned into a professional stage complete with lighting and sound system, comfy seating,... Read more

Honduras: Bird Paradise Par Excellence

Aug 13, 2014

Honduras: Bird Paradise Par Excellence

In all of the territory of the United States there are about 800 species of birds. What would you think if we told you that in an area equivalent to 1 percent of all that territory there are about as many birds? That place is called Honduras. The country is, par excellence, a paradise for birds, and has more than 750 recorded species including migratory and resident varieties. This large number is due in part to the fact that the... Read more

Life in Copán: Hamlet, Beer, Planes and Tolls

Aug 08, 2014

Life in Copán: Hamlet, Beer, Planes and Tolls

August in Copán Ruinas generally means a few things... warm temperatures, a bit of refreshing summer rains to cool things off, the end of summer vacations, and the arrival of the annual pilgrimage of tourists from El Salvador who travel en masse during that country's week-long feria  August vacation period.  Most Salvadorans, of course, make a direct bee-line for Honduras' the north coast beaches and Bay Islands, as El Salvador has only dark water, dark sand and strong surf... Read more

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