lunes, 14 de septiembre de 2009

The Americas Policy Group (APG) to Stephen Harper Prime Minister of Canada

July 22, 2009

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper

Prime Minister of Canada

House of Commons

Ottawa, Ontario

K1A 0A6

Dear Prime Minister Harper:

We are writing this letter on behalf of the Americas Policy Group (APG),
a Working Group of the Canadian Council for International Co-operation,
to express our profound concern with regard to the escalating crisis in
Honduras. We urge the Canadian government to take immediate steps
and use all of the leverage at its disposal to ensure that the democratic
order, respect for human rights and rule of law are restored in Honduras.
Specifically, Canada must send a much stronger message, backed by
concrete actions, to signal its commitment to the restoration of the
elected president Manuel Zelaya to complete his mandate until
January 2010.

The members of the APG have long standing partnerships with Honduran
civil society organizations including labour, faith based groups, women's
groups, NGOs and community-based organizations. APG members and
their partners on the ground are deeply concerned for the safety of
Honduran citizens who are being persecuted for defending the
constitutional order. Those most targeted are human rights defenders,
members of the media, trade unionists and supporters of the country’s
democratically-elected President Manuel Zelaya.

As you are no doubt aware, the list of documented violations of human
rights, following the coup d’état, is growing.

These have included: the suspension of constitutional rights; the arbitrary
arrest and detention of over 1,150 people; the issuing of arrest warrants
for social leaders on fabricated charges; censorship of at least 14 local
media outlets; violations of the right to life and physical integrity by
security forces who fired on protestors resulting in the death of at least
one person and the wounding of many more. In addition there have been
execution-style killings of individuals opposing the coup, among them;
we note the July 11 murders of Roger Bados of the Bloque Popular
coalition in San Pedro Sula and of Democratic Unification activist Ramón
García in the department of Santa Bárbara.

Americas Policy Group

Alberta Council for Global Cooperation

Amnesty International Canada

Atlantic Regional Solidarity Network

Avocats Sans Frontières

British Columbia Council for International

Canadian Auto Workers (CAW)

Canadian Catholic Organization for
Development and Peace

Canadian Crossroads International

Canadian Labour Congress

Canadian Society for International Health

Canadian Union of Postal Workers

CERLAC, York University

Common Frontiers

Christian Peacemaker Teams

Co Development Canada

Communication, Energy, & Paperworks
Union of Canada

Comite pour les Droits Humains en
Amerique Latine



Horizons of Friendship

Inter Pares

KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice

YMCA-Canada/YMCA Montreal

L’Entraide Missionnaire

Lawyers Rights Watch Canada

Match International

Mennonite Central Committee

MiningWatch Canada

Ontario Public Service Employees Union

OXFAM Canada

Presbyterian World Service and

Primate's World Relief and Development

Public Service Alliance of Canada

Rights & Democracy


Save the Children Canada

Social Justice Committee (Montreal)

United Church of Canada

United Steelworkers

Given this context, the APG is disturbed by the activities of business lobbies that are trying to dissuade
international sanctions, and promote investment to provide liquidity to the defacto regime. These actions not
only attempt to shore up an undemocratic regime that has been fully repudiated and isolated by every other
government, but also undermine the negotiations which ideally would help the country move forward in a
democratic and peaceful way. Allegations have come to our attention that the Canadian company Goldcorp
(Entremares) has provided financial and logistical support to enable its workers to attend pro-coup marches in
Tegucigalpa; if founded, this is a clear example of a Canadian company working in a way that is undermining
Canada’s public position on Honduras.

The current crisis in Honduras represents an important challenge for the Canadian government to stand by the
stated values that underpin Canada’s reengagement in the Americas. Canada’s support for the OAS Resolution
of July 4th, 2009 – resulting in the suspension of Honduras from the OAS – was an important first step.

While we recognize Canada’s support for the mediation efforts brokered by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, it
is clear that this process, in and of itself, is not enough. It is inadequate for Canada to wait on these diplomatic
negotiations, while not also applying decisive pressure on the illegal interim government in the form of strong
sanctions. The perpetrators of the coup must be held responsible for driving Honduras back to a period
characterized by violence, intimidation and authoritarianism. We urge the Government of Canada to:

Review its bilateral relationship with the Republic of Honduras, as called for under section four of the OAS
resolution of July 4th, 2009. Recognizing that the coup has led to grave breaches of peace, security and human
rights, and has escalated tensions throughout the region, Canada should immediately apply decisive sanctions,
to pressure those involved in the coup, and any successors named by illegitimate processes, to step down.

We urge Canada to follow the lead of the US Government, the European Union, the World Bank, the Inter
American Development Bank, the Central American Bank of Economic Integration, among others, all of which
have “paused” programs, transfers, budgetary support and new loans to Honduras. We also ask that you:

• Immediately enforce a mandatory embargo on all funds and transfers to the Military training assistance
program, and suspend any other promised funds to Honduran security forces, military or police;

In light of the pervasive culture of impunity which has allowed such a coup to unfold, we urge Canada to:

• Call on the defacto regime to cease human rights violations and restore human rights protections to all
Hondurans. In particular, Canada should demand that the Honduran authorities immediately release any
government officials, and political activists who may be currently detained and refrain from further
arbitrary detentions; and guarantee the right to freedom of expression so that supporters of the
democratically-elected President, human rights defenders, and journalists are able to carry out their
legitimate activities without fear of reprisal;
• Support the application of international law and national justice against the coup perpetrators, and call
for reparations for the illegal actions and rights violations committed;
• Act urgently in a way which will dissuade or circumvent Canadian investors or business leaders who
may be providing support to the coup and countering the OAS resolve to increase the pressure on the

Be assured we will follow the situation very closely and look forward to your response,


Gerry Barr Jim Hodgson Nadia Faucher

President-CEO APG Co-Chair APG Co-Chair

Canadian Council for

International Co-operation


Hon. Minister Lawrence Cannon, Minister of foreign Affairs and International Trade

Hon. Peter Kent, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas)

Alexandra Bugailiskis, Assistant Deputy Minister Latin America and the Caribbean

Ambassador Neil Reeder, Canadian Ambassador to Honduras

Daniel Arsenault, Counsellor and Head of Cooperation of Canada’s Embassy in Honduras

Alexandre Leveque, Director DFAIT: Caribbean, Central America & Regional Policy

Michael Ignatieff, Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada

Gilles Duceppe, Leader of the Bloc Québécois

Jack Layton, Leader of the New Democratic Party

Members of the Americas Policy Group

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