Lenca Indigenous Journalist Pablo Hernandez Is Gunned Down

Journalist Pablo Hernandez, Honduras.
Journalist Pablo Hernandez, Honduras. | Photo: Twitter/ @Orlinmahn

By teleSur - 10. January 2022

For years now, Honduras has become one of the most dangerous places for human rights defenders, environmental activists, journalists, and social leaders.

On Sunday, Honduran human rights defender Pablo Hernandez was murdered by several bullet shots in the back in the Tierra Colorada community, in the Lempira department.

Bertha Oliva, the coordinator of the Committee of Relatives of the Disappeared in Honduras (COFADEH), denounced that armed men ambushed Hernandez on a dirt road.

"This murder is one more attack on freedom of expression and the defense of human rights," The Association of Community Media in Honduras (AMCH) said, recalling that Hernandez was director of the Tenan community radio station that broadcasts from San Marcos de Caiquin.

“Hernandez was the second Lenca leader killed in less than a year. In March 2020, Lenca activist Juan Carlos Cerros was shot to death in the town of Nueva Granada," news agency AP recalled, adding that they "belonged to the same indigenous community as Berta Caceres, a prize-winning environmental and Indigenous rights defender who was murdered in 2016."

The AMCH decried that Hernandez was threatened and harassed on several occasions for defending the rights of Indigenous peoples, for which he filed a complaint with the authorities.

Besides having been a promoter of the Indigenous University, Hernandez was mayor of the Auxiliaria de La Vara Alta, coordinator of ecclesial base communities, and president of the Cacique Lempira Biosphere Agro-Ecologists Network.

The assassination of the Indigenous journalist was also condemned by former President Manuel Zelaya, whose wife, Xiomara Castro, will be inaugurated as president of Honduras on January 27th 2022.