Posted 2010/10/18

Help Protect the Environmental Movement of Olancho (MAO)

The Environmental Movement of Olancho (MAO) campaigns to stop the illegal and unrestricted logging that has led to soil erosion, the drying up of rivers and the further impoverishment of the people. Destructive and irresponsible logging practices have led to an environmental crisis which caused widespread contamination and led to the spread of disease in the affected region. Because their activities threaten the economic interests of the major logging companies they have been harrassed, intimidated, attacked and killed. ===Further Information=== MAO faces major repression from the government and the military as well as the logging companies. Members, including Carlos Flores, Mauricio Hernandez, Arturo Reyes, Heraldo Zuniga and Roger Ivan Cartagena have been killed. These cases have not been investigated and the perpetrators have still to be identified. Local coordinator Rene Gradis and Padre Andres Tamayo have both survived repeated assasination attempts. Padre Tamayo has had to leave the country after being stripped of his parish and his citizenship.He had received death threats on various occasions and had a sum of $40,000 on his head. Padre Andres Tamayo Cortes was nominated for the Front Line award in 2007. Background Information Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) in Honduras are subjected to acts of harassment, death threats, violent attacks, judicial harassment, defamation suits, ill-treatment, torture and killings.State security forces have been both directly and indirectly implicated in violent attacks on HRDs. The perpetrators of violations against many defenders of environmental, land and indigenous rights, are influential landowners or logging companies.

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