|World Bank dollars finance the green deserts of oil palms (Photo courtesy of sauvonslaforet.org)|
Link to brief: http://rightsaction.org/action-content/written-submission-rights-action-and-global-initiative-economic-social-and-cultural
Link to Bajo Aguan report: http://rightsaction.org/sites/default/files//Rpt_130220_Aguan_Final.pdf
Human rights advocates tell World Bank (WB) auditors that the WB is
obligated to respect the rights of the "Panama" campesino community in
Honduras, who were shot at while protesting the illegal and violent land
usurpations that they are suffering at the hands of the Dinant
Corporation, a WB loan recipient.
Please send letters and call the US Secretary of the Treasury, the
Canadian Minister of Finance, and the Executive Directors for the U.S.
and Canada in the World Bank - Contact information below.
On March 6, 2013, the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and
Cultural Rights (GI-ESCR) and Rights Action presented a brief to the
Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO) of the World Bank's International
Finance Corporation (IFC) in reference to an ongoing audit the CAO is
conducting of a $30 million loan to the Dinant Corporation, a Honduran
African palm oil producer controlled by Honduras' largest landowner,
Miguel Facusse. The WB loan was made in late 2009, to the
military-backed regime that came to power in Honduras after the June
2009 military coup, and that was engaged in widespread repression and
human rights abuses against the Honduran people.
Even as the WB examines the loan, widespread violence and repression
continues in the very region where the WB is invested in Dinant's
African palm production. The day before Rights Action and GI-ESCR
presented the brief, Honduran security forces opened fire against a
group of campesinos from the Panama farm protesting the ongoing
usurpation of their land by the Dinant Corporation.
Two weeks ago, Rights Action published a comprehensive report
investigation documenting human rights violations by Honduran security
forces, and private security forces hired by African palm producers,
describing the murders of 93 campesinos and those perceived to be their
supporters. The day the report was released, February 21, Yoni Adolfo
Cruz and Ezequiel Guillen Garcia disappeared; their tortured bodies were
found on February 24th.
Demand that the World Bank, the U.S. and Canadian governments comply with international law and cancel the Dinant loan.
Ian H. Solomon
Office of the Executive Director of the United States
The World Bank
1818 H Street, N.W. (Mail Stop MC 13-1307)
Washington, DC 20433
f: (202) 477-2967
Secretary of the Treasury
United States Department of the Treasury
U.S. Department of Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20220
Executive Director for Canada, Ireland and the Caribbean
The World Bank
1818 H Street, N.W.; Mail Stop MC 12-1206
Washington, DC 20433 U.S.A.
f: (202) 477-4155
Minister of Finance
Department of Finance Canada
140 O'Connor Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0G5
More about THE GI-ESCR & RIGHTS ACTION BRIEF: WORLD BANK AND MEMBER STATES ARE OBLIGATED BY LAW TO PROTECT AND DEFEND HUMAN RIGHTS
Excerpt from rightsaction.org:
"NEW REPORT DOCUMENTS TARGETED CAMPESINO KILLINGS, DEATH SQUAD ACTIONS
According to an investigation published February 21, 2013, since
January 2010, 95 members of campesino movements or those believed to be
associated with them have been killed, 53 while waiting for buses riding
bicycles or driving on public roads, 13 were in their homes or
undisputed farmland, 10 abducted and their bodies later found, most
tortured, while another 3 remain disappeared. Another 16 were killed on
or neighboring land in dispute, though many of those reportedly not in
the context of an eviction but also apparently in targeted killings.
Reports indicate that hundreds more have been wounded, many disabled,
raped, tortured, had their homes and families destroyed. The day the
report was released, February 21, Yoni Adolfo Cruz and Ezequiel Guillen
Garcia disappeared; their tortured bodies were found on February 24th.
As the World Bank deliberates, the campesinos of Panama loose even more
of their land at the point of hundreds of guns, and campesinos
throughout the Aguan await the next victim of the violence the World
Bank loan has facilitated."