URGENT ACTION in solidarity with Afro-indigenous communities in Honduras

January 9, 2013

Dear Friend,

LEGISLATIVE ACTION NEEDED! Contact the Foreign Policy Staffer in the Washington DC Office of Your Representative!

On Monday, January 07, 2013, U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) circulated a House sign-on "Dear Colleague" letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Holder addressing ongoing human rights violations against Afro-indigenous communities in Honduras.

The letter highlights the need for full accountability in the 11 May 2012 murders of four Afro-indigenous civilians in a violent U.S. drug raid gone wrong in Ahuas, Honduras. Days after the killings, the Honduras Accompaniment Project traveled to Ahuas with COFADEH to provide protective accompaniment for their human rights mission investigating this attack.

The letter also calls for "a review on the implementation of counternarcotics operations carried out by our government in Honduras". The four initial signers - Rep Johnson (D-GA), Conyers (D-MI), Meeks (D-NY), and Bass (D-CA) - are all members of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Please call the foreign policy aide in your Rep's DC office. The Congressional Switchboard number is (202) 224- 3121

(To identify your rep, go to the website below and type your zip code - in the upper right corner): http://www.house.gov/representatives

Ask to speak with the aide who handles foreign policy
and use the script below. If the foreign policy aide is not is not available, ask to leave a message on his/her answering machine. Be sure to ask for the name of foreign policy staffer so you can follow up.

Script: "My name is _____. I am a constituent in (town / city neighborhood). I am calling to ask Rep. _____ to sign the Hank Johnson letter in support of Afro-indigenous human rights in Honduras. Has Rep. _­___ seen this letter? Can I count on him/her to sign on? Please call me this week at (your phone number) to let me know if you have seen the letter, and if Rep_____ will sign it. Thank You."

In your phone conversation or email request, highlight that you are: concerned about ongoing human rights violations against Afro-indigenous communities in Honduras and the lack of a full investigation into alleged abuses by Honduran security forces and the role of DEA in the May 11 incident that led to the tragic death of four indigenous villagers.

To sign on to the letter, the legislative staffer who handles foreign policy must call or email Sascha Thompson in Rep. Johnson's office to inform her. Please contact the aide every few days to make sure that the staffer has asked the Rep to sign on.

Let us know if your rep agrees to sign on, jenny@friendshipamericas.org. Thank you for taking action on behalf of the human rights of Afro-indigenous communities in Honduras.

Jenny Atlee
Friendship Office