DROI Chair strongly condemns the assassination of human rights defenders José Ángel Flores and Silmer George
Following the assassination of human rights defenders José Ángel Flores and Silmer George, the Chair of the Subcommittee on Human Rights of the European Parliament, Elena Valenciano (S&D, ES) made the following statement:
"I condemn in the strongest of terms the recent assassination of human rights defenders José Ángel Flores and Silmer George in Tocoa, Colón. This is the latest in a series of deplorable acts perpetrated against peaceful human rights and land rights defenders and activists in Honduras. It comes in the wake of the murder of Berta Cáceres.
José Ángel Flores was President of the Aguán United Farmers’ Movement MUCA, of which Silmer George was also a member. The two had long been active in defending the land rights of small-scale sustenance farmers in the Valley and had endured years of threats, acts of intimidation and judicial harassment. The environment of terror and intimidation in which peaceful activists like Ms. Cáceres, Mr. Flores and Mr. George were working, ultimately leading to them paying the ultimate price, must not be allowed to continue. There are many others currently in a similar situation, who need protection.
I strongly urge the Honduran authorities to conduct a serious and thorough investigation into these killings, and to bring the perpetrators to justice. In addition, I urge a swift implementation of measures to guarantee the physical and psychological security of all land rights defenders in the Aguán Valley and the rest of the country.
I extend my support and solidarity to all those peacefully defending the rights of their communities in the region with continued courage and conviction".