From the Family: We are devastated by the loss of our fearless Bertita. She was a leader who fought on behalf of human rights and the environment, and spoke truth to power. We ask the international community and human rights organizations around the world to put pressure on their leaders to bring about justice. Her murder is an act of cowardice that will only amplify Bertita’s message to bring about change in Honduras and make this a better, more humane world.
Contact: Silvio Carrillo
UN Women strongly condemns the murder of human rights defender and Honduran indigenous leader Berta Cáceres
“Her murder is a serious crime that directly contravenes both national law that protects individual citizens, and the provisions of United Nations General Assembly resolution 68/181 of 2013 that specifically addresses the protection of women human rights defenders. The resolution recognizes the important role played by women of all ages in the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms. It indicates the many types of risk, discrimination and violence faced by women defenders of human rights and calls upon States to take all measures necessary to ensure their protection, and create a safe and enabling environment for the defence of human rights.”
“Berta was a champion of the rights of indigenous people and of the natural environment. She risked her life for those causes, braving the threats and the fear, knowing that any day could be her last. For her courage and commitment she was admired around the world, including in the Congress of the United States, and she will be forever remembered for it.”
“The murder of Honduran indigenous and environmental rights activist Berta Cáceres is a tragedy. It is further proof of the horrific conditions for human rights activists in the country. I urge Ambassador Nealon to take swift action to push the Honduran government to condemn this murder and to ensure that no more labor organizers and human rights activists are killed or imprisoned. The world is watching. It’s time for Honduras to protect human rights and the right to organize. “
“The AFL-CIO joins many allied organizations in Honduras, elsewhere in Latin America and the United States, in sending our deepest condolences to the family, friends and community of Berta Cáceres, in denouncing her assassination and demanding a thorough investigation of those responsible for planning and executing her murder.
“We also note that another leading activist, Gustavo Castro, was wounded during the assassination. As a key witness to the murder, he must be protected and given every opportunity to testify about this horrible crime.”
“The cowardly killing of Berta is a tragedy that was waiting to happen. For years, she had been the victim of a sustained campaign of harassment and threats to stop her from defending the rights of indigenous communities,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.
“It is not enough to be sorry for her friends and family — we need to think of ways large and small to step into the vacancy left by her murder. We need numbers to begin to make a dent in the arrogance that brings someone to believe that they can kill someone who stands in their way for more profit and power.”