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Honduras : Another farmers killed!

Honduras, La Esperanza, Intibuca, May 16, 2012

Approximately 2 hours ago today, Wednesday May 16, 2012 we are informed that another campesino has been assassinated in Lower Aguan. The name of murdered campesino is Juan Jose Peralta, approximately 60 years old, the names of another two campesinos who were wounded are unknown; they were transferred to the hospital in Tocoa, Colon.

The violent act occurred around 9 am in the sector of Taujica close to the La Confianza cooperative when the campesinos were in a vehicle carrying a load of firewood they were attacked by suspected security guards.

URGENT Alert - May 16, 2012 - COPINH
The Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH) alerts the public that in these morning hours of May 16, a convoy of army and police units are arriving at the community of Lavanderos in the ancestral Tolupan territory. This community has maintained a history struggle for the defense of its territory and forest that ancestrally belong to this people. In recent days the loggers have pressured the community in order to put into action management plans approved by the State of Honduras without community consent and out of compliance with Agreement 169 of the Indigenous Peoples signed by the State. Yesterday tensions grew and today, as is recently usually the case in indigenous territories where they struggle to protect natural resources, the armed forceds and police have arrived in the zone for which we fear for the safety of the people.

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Intervention Africa Mthombeni at the UN Human Right Council

14 March 2012


The International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL), along with La Via Campesina congratulate the work of the UN Advisory Committee, especially on establishing the groundwork for the promotion and protection of the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas.

We all know that hunger is not a natural disaster but, as stated by the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Mr. Olivier De Shutter, hunger “is primarily the result of political factors that condemn small farmers, the main victims of hunger, to poverty. These factors include insufficient access to land, water and credit; poor organisation of local markets; lack of infrastructure; and lack of bargaining power against an increasingly concentrated agro-industrial sector”.

Today some 952 million people throughout the world suffer chronic hunger, 80 per cent of them live in rural areas. 50 per cent of the world’s hungry are smallholder farmers, 20 per cent are landless families who survive as tenant farmers or poorly paid agricultural laborers.

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Intervention of Henry Saragih at the 19th session of UN Human Rights Council


Madame President,

I am reading this statement on behalf of FIAN International, an organization working for the defense of the right to adequate food—and La Via Campesina, a movement I belong to, that brings together millions of peasants, landless people, women farmers, indigenous people and agricultural workers from around the world. We defend small-scale sustainable agriculture as a way of promoting social justice and dignity—and we strongly oppose every form of agriculture that is destroying people and nature.

Not long before the Final Study of the Advisory Committee, a professor at Wageningen University in the Netherlands published an important book called The New Peasantries, in which he states that “there are now more peasants than ever before in history and they still constitute some two-fifths of humanity.”

Nonetheless, increased land grabbing for monoculture plantations, logging, mining and other extractive industries has been destroying our livelihood and environment, making it very difficult for us to farm, to tend our livestock, and to hunt and gather for our daily sustenance. Land grabbing is causing masive violations of our human rights, whilst destroying our land, society, environment and our food sovereignty. Therefore, we urge the international community to cooperate in stopping these violations, which cannot be tackled with the existing human rights instruments.

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Land grabbing shows the urgent need to protect peasants' rights

(Geneva, 11 March 2012)

It's a red alert now.

The government of Saudi Arabia currently owns 1.6 million hectares (ha) of land in Sudan and Indonesia. In Madagascar around 1.3 million ha were leased, bought or transferred to private corporations of South Korea.

The High Level Group of Experts of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) estimates that between 50 and 80 million ha of land in poor and developing countries have been negotiated, acquired or leased by international investors.

Large-scale land transactions are undermining food security, livelihoods and the environment of local populations. Along with a history-long discrimination against rural people, this wildly spreading global phenomenon has been the reason why there have been so many reports of human rights violations in rural areas recently, especially with regards to land rights.

While the United Nations Human rights Council is planning to discuss a declaration of the rights of peasants in the coming days, FIAN International together with La Via Campesina has organised a parallel event to the 19th session of the UN Human Rights Council on Thursday (8/3).

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