Wednesday, September 2, 2009

First Military Coup of 21st Century Reverses Honduran Women's Gains in Human Rights

By Margaret Thompson
FIRE – Feminist International Radio Endeavour/Radio Internacional Feminista

August 24, 2009 - Tegucigalpa, Honduras – The military coup d’état in Honduras on June 28th has seriously eroded democratic institutions and hard-fought gains in women’s human rights and human rights in general. Setbacks include the takeover and militarization of the National Institute of Women (INAM) by the defacto coup administration, the suspension of 25 people including 18 women from their jobs at INAM, and violent repression by security forces of feminists who were protesting in front of the ministry, ordered by the defacto appointed Minister of Women.

Furthermore, as violence against women rises, the number of formal complaints filed with police has dropped to zero.

According to Gilda Rivera, director of CEM-H (Women’s Studies Center of Honduras), the coup resulted in the devastation and militarization of democratic institutions such as the National Institute for Women (INAM), which was established in 1998 based on international agreements made in 1995 with the UN Fourth World Conference on Women.

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