Honduras: International organisations condemn the murder of a peasants’ human rights lawyer and defender from the lower Aguan and of the special prosecutor for human rights

International Statement

October 1, 2012

The undersigned organizations condemn the murder of the lawyer and peasants’ human rights defender, Antonio Trejo; and of the special prosecutor for human rights of the department of Choluteca, Eduardo Diaz Mazariegos.

On the night of Saturday September 22, 2012, the legal representative of the Movimiento Auténtico Reivindicador del Aguán- MARCA (Authentic Peasant Reclamation Movement of Aguan), Antonio Trejo (41 years old) was shot near the Toncontin airport, in Tegucigalpa.

Trejo represented peasant cooperatives of the Lower Aguan region, members of MARCA in their struggle for access to land in order to fulfill their right to food and housing, among other rights. After 18 years of litigation, Trejo achieved that the Civil Trial Court of Francisco Morazán and the District Trial Court of Trujillo ruled that the acquisition by the businessmen Miguel Facussé and René Morales of the states of San Isidro, La Trinidad and El Despertar -with a total area of 1,776 hectares- was illegal and restitute the right to land to the peasants.

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Victory in hard-fought struggle in defense of the human rights of peasants

UN resolution hints at a new international instrument to  promote and protect  the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas

The United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a landmark resolution hinting at a new instrument for the rights of the world’s estimated 1.2 billion peasants and other people working in rural areas. The resolution (A/HRC/21/L23) is monumental in light of peasants’ key role for food production—and also in the wake of contemporary challenges such as growing conflicts over land, water, and also food prices and climate crises.

The UN Human Rights Council resolution was approved on September 27, after 23 Member States voted in favour, 15 abstained and nine voted against the text[1].

The resolution is based on the report of the Advisory Committee of the UN Human Rights Council entitled “Final study of the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee on the advancement of the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas” (A/HRC/19/75). This study was adopted by this body on the right to food in the 19th session of UN Human Rights Council (March 2012). In this session, the resolution on the right to food was adopted by consensus.

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Human Rights Council: Towards a better protection of the rights of farmers and peasants


Press release - La Via Campesina

(Geneva, 28 September 2012) It is with great satisfaction that the international peasant's movement La Via Campesina and its member organization in Switzerland the peasant union Uniterre can announce that the United Nations have decided to better protect the rights of farmers and peasants around the world. Thursday, September 27, 2012, the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution "Promoting the human rights of peasants and others people living in rural areas."

Through this resolution, the Council recognizes the absolute need for a new international legal instrument that takes the form of a United Nations declaration. It aims to bring together in a single text the specific rights of peasant farmers, women and men, and to integrate new rights such as rights to land, seeds, means of production or information in rural areas.

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Palestine : Free Palestinian farmers and agricultural workers targeted for imprisonment


August 5, 2012

As they organize to defend their land and Palestinian farming against the onslaught of settlements and siege, Palestinian agricultural workers and organizers have been subject to an intensified arrest campaign in the occupied West Bank of Palestine. 
A number of staff of the Union of agricultural WorK Committes (UAWC), a Palestinian grassroots organization that organizes Palestinian farmers to defend their land and develop their products, have been targeted in recent days for arrest by Israeli occupation forces.

On July 31, Dr. Moayad Ahmad Bisharat, the coordinator of UAWC’s Jericho office was abducted at dawn from his home. The UAWC office in Jericho was then ransacked by Israeli forces, who confiscated the computers, laptops, and files of the organization.

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