Document - Honduras: Human rights defender’s life at risk: Karla Zelaya


UA: 292/12 Index: AMR 37/012/2012 Honduras Date: 1 October 2012 Date: 14 January 2011



As a result of her human rights work with Honduran group Unified Campesino Movement of Aguán, human rights defender Karla Zelaya has received death threats by text message since 25 August. Her life is at risk.

On 27 August, Karla Zelaya received a threat by text message saying “this is how everybody who talks is going to end up, like that bitch, watch your back (“asi van a kedar todos los q ablen. como esa perra cuidense las espaldas”). On 25 August, she received a threatening text message that said “This bitch is going to die I know she’s alone now” (“esa perra se va a morir se que ahora esta sola”). Karla Zelaya said that she had been receiving threats by SMS for about three weeks. The latest text threat was sent on 20 September, and said “bastard bitch you think you got rid of me but I’m here and following you close” (“perra bastarda pensasr q se abian dsacid d mi, pero aki estoi y te sigo d serkita”). Between 18 and 19 September, she also received anonymous silent phone calls.

Karla Zelaya is a journalist for the group Unified Campesino Movement of Aguán (Movimiento Unificado Campesino del Aguán, MUCA), a movement campaigning for the land rights of peasant farmers amid ongoing disputes over land ownership in the Aguán region in the north east of Honduras. As part of her role at MUCA, Karla Zelaya routinely films forced evictions of peasant communities or detention procedures following public demonstrations.

Please write immediately in Spanish or your own language:

Calling for an independent, thorough and impartial investigation into the threats against Karla Zelaya, with the results made public and those responsible brought to justice;

Urging that the authorities take immediate steps to provide appropriate protection to Karla Zelaya, in accordance with her wishes.


Attorney General

Sr. Luis Alberto Rubí

Fiscal General de la República

Lomas del Guijarro, Avenida República Dominicana, Edificio Lomas Plaza II

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Fax: +504 2221 5667

Salutation: Sr. Fiscal General/Dear Attorney General

Minister of Interior

Sr. Pompeyo Bonilla

Secretaría de Estado en el Despacho de Seguridad, Plantel Casamata, subida al Picacho,

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Fax: +504 2220 1756

Salutation: Dear Minister/Estimado Sr. Ministro

And copies to:

Comité de Familiares de Detenidos Desaparecidos en Honduras (COFADEH)

Barrio La Plazuela, Avenida Cervantes

Casa No. 1301

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Fax: +504 2220 5280

(Ask “me da tono de fax, por favor”)

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please insert local diplomatic addresses below:

Name Address 1 Address 2 Address 3 Fax Fax number Email Email address Salutation Salutation

Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above date.



ADditional Information

In February 2012, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders – following a visit to the country – said that human rights defenders continue to suffer death threats, attacks, harassment and stigmatization and urged the authorities to urgently establish a protection programme for defenders.

On 22 September, human rights lawyer Antonio Trejo Cabrera was killed in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras. Antonio Trejo Cabrera was a lawyer for three peasant cooperatives that are embroiled in a complex land-rights dispute in Bajo Aguán, a fertile valley in the north of the country. He had helped farmers to regain legal rights to land in the valley and was due to travel to Washington, D.C. in October to take part in hearings at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on the ongoing land dispute. Antonio Trejo Cabrera had reported receiving death threats linked to his work representing the victims of human rights abuses in the Bajo Aguán region.��In recent years, thousands of landless rural workers occupied land whose ownership is disputed by wealthy landowners and corporations. Legal battles have been waged for over a decade, with decisions being set down, appealed and multiple forced evictions being carried out.

See Amnesty International news story at:

Name: Karla Zelaya

Gender m/f: f

UA: 292/12 Index: AMR 37/012/2012 Issue Date: 1 October 2012

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