International: IACHR Asks Honduras and Guatemala to Respect Human Rights

IACHR.pngPhoto @ BBC

On February 19th, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) expressed its concern in a press release about the human rights situation of migrants and refugees that make up caravans that since January began to settle in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The IACHR informed that they received information that members, mostly Hondurans, of a caravan, which is headed to Mexico and the United States, “faced various obstacles to leave their country, such as the establishment of at least seven roadblocks, blockades with human fences formed by agents of different security bodies, and filters implemented by the police that requested identity documents at the border checkpoint. Likewise, the use of force was recorded by the Honduran police, who allegedly fired tear gas towards the caravan, wounding several people, including children and adolescents (…) as a consequence, many people, including families and children, and girls, decided to avoid regular crossings, using more dangerous routes through blind spots.”

On the Guatemalan side of the border, they documented the use of force by Guatemalan authorities, “as well as the use of a riot police barrier with batons, rubber bullets and weapons, which only gave way to women with children.”

In the communiqué they reminded the Honduran and Guatemalan states, “that any person has the right to freely leave any country, including their own, in terms of Article 22.2 of the American Convention on Human Rights. Likewise, the impossibility of leaving their country may also imply a restriction on the right to seek and receive asylum, in accordance with the provisions of Article 22.7 of the American Convention.”

In addition “that the use of force in migratory operations should be used only in compliance with the principles of legitimate purpose, absolute necessity and proportionality; and that migrants do not pose a threat to national security and that the human rights of migrants and refugees are guaranteed, including the right to seek and receive asylum, the right to non-repatriation.”

In this regard, the Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants of the IACHR noted: “Today more than ever we must remember that migration is not a crime. The massive migratory movements that we have been observing for several years are a reflection of the situation of generalized violence, discrimination, poverty and inequality faced by people in a greater situation of exclusion in the countries of the Northern Triangle.”

For more information in Spanish:

CIDH insta a garantizar derechos de personas que integran la caravana de migrantes y refugiados en Honduras y Guatemala (CIDH, 19 de febrero de 2019)

CIDH insta a Guatemala y Honduras a garantizar derechos de migrantes (24-horas, 20 de febrero de 2019)

For more information from SIPAZ:

International/National: Registration of Humanitarian Visas for Migrants Closes
(February 12th, 2019)

International/Mexico: Xenophobic Violence Erupts Against Migrants in Tecun Uman
(February 1st, 2019)

National/International: New Migrant Caravans Arrive at Border; Others Advance through Mexico (January 28th, 2019)

National/International: New Migrant Caravan Reaches Mexico (January 23rd, 2019)

National/International: 181 Countries Approve United Nations Global Pact for Refugees

(January 4th, 2019)

National/International: 164 Countries Approve UN Global Migration Pact (January 2nd, 2019)


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