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Ariel Díaz

HRD & General Coordinator
Youth for the Defence of Human Rights (Juventud por la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos)

Ariel Díaz is the General Coordinator of Juventud por la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos (Youth for the Defence of Human Rights) and a supporter of Centro para la Cooperación y Desarollo LGBTI – SOMOS CDC (Centre for LGBTI Cooperation and Development). The youth movement is a student organization that works to raise awareness on the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and its implementation in Honduras. SOMOS CDC promotes LGBTI rights in the country, developing cooperation programs which include aspects of sexual health, civil participation and human rights for the LGBTI population.

Human rights defenders suffer extrajudicial executions, enforced disappearances, torture and ill-treatment as well as judicial harassment, threats and stigmatisation. Journalists, lawyers, prosecutors, those defending the rights of women, children, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community, indigenous and Afro-Honduran communities, and those working on environmental and land rights issues are particularly at risk.

LGBTI defenders in Honduras are doubly discriminated against. They are discriminated firstly because they are human rights defenders and secondly because they defend LGBTI rights. Journalists continue to face increased risks as they report on human rights violations. Constant threats, harassment and killings of journalists have led many to self-censor. Since the 2009 military coup, the number of killings, threats and acts of intimidation against campesinos and environmental rights defenders has increased. The perpetrators of violations against many defenders of environmental, land and indigenous rights, are often influential landowners or logging companies.