U.S. Congressmen: US should be neutral in Honduran elections
U.S. Congressmen are questioning the American role in Hondurans as well as the transparency of the current electoral process. In a letter to Secretary of State, John Kerry, they urge the U.S. government to be entirely neutral in Honduras and ask John Kerry to speak forcefully against attacks targeting human rights activists and opposition candidates.
In a letter to Secretary of State, John Kerry, Congressmen Raúl M. Grijalva (Arizona), Hank Johnson (Georgia) and Mike Honda (California) have expressed their concern about American policy in Honduras.
“We are concerned that the Embassy (U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa) has not spoken forcefully about the militarization of the police under the impetus of one of the candidates, expressed concern with the National Party’s concentration of institutional power through illegal means, and condemned the ongoing intimidation against the members of the opposition.”
Congressmen Grijalva, Johnson and Honda request the U.S. Government ”to be entirely neutral in its public and private messages to this country.”
The three Congressmen argue that the upcoming elections are at risk, as human rights abuses under the existing government continue to threaten opposition candidates. Congressmen Grijalva, Johnson and Honda fear the lack of democratic conditions to guarantee a free and fair election process.
“State security forces are taking on an increasingly central, and ominous role in context of the election. We are particularly alarmed to learn that the ruling party, and its presidential candidate Mr. Juan Orlando Hernandez, now dominates all the key institutions of the government, including the country’s electoral authority and the military, which distributes the ballots – leaving scarce recourse for Honduran citizens should fraud be committed in the electoral process, or human rights violations continue to threaten open debate. This is particularly troubling given the long history of electoral fraud in Honduras.”
The Honduran President, Porfirio Lobo (National Party), says that accusations of attacks against opposition candidates and the lack of transparency in the electoral process are part of an international campaign against him and his government.
Carta de los congresistas: http://grijalva.house.gov/news-and-press-releases/reps-grijalva-honda-hank-johnson-urge-secretary-kerry-to-speak-against-militarization-of-civil-society-ahead-of-honduran-election/