Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Honduras: At 16 Homicides Daily, Foreign Tourists Should Avoid the Country Save Business Travel

According to The Latin American Tribune, Radio Progreso executive who had received protection since 2009 was found stabbed to death this past weekend in the northern Honduran province of Yoro, Reflection, Investigation and Communications Team (ERIC) director the Rev. Ismael Moreno said.

Carlos Mejia, 31, was murdered on Friday night (April 11) at his home in the city of El Progreso, Moreno said.

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights granted “protective measures” to the 31-year-old Mejia five years ago, Moreno said.

COMMENT: Despite Mr. Meija having been afforded protective services since 2009, the reality is that few targeted individuals can be effectively protected within Honduras' borders, particularly considering that Mr. Meija was stabbed to death in his own home.

One factor that impacts directly on Honduras' homicide rate is the fact that it has one of the most corrupt police systems in the world and one that daily infringes on the human rights of its citizens.

Radio Progreso executives confirmed that Mejia, who worked as the station’s marketing manager, was murdered, but the National Police has not issued a statement about the case. So typical:

Hector Flores, an executive with the company that publishes the LA PRENSA, EL HERALDO and DIAZ newspapers, was found stabbed to death in late December 2013.

The Organizacion Publicitaria, S.A. (OPSA) executive was murdered inside his residence.

An average of sixteen people are murdered every day in Honduras, making the country one of the most dangerous places in the world.

Taking the math one step further, sixteen murder victims per day amounts to 5,840 murders each year, which, if you think about, is nearly TWICE the number of people killed from the terror attacks in the US on September 11, 2001.  

Worse, if you have any doubt whatsoever as to the ineffectiveness of police in Honduras, since 2008, of the 50 murders committed against US citizens since 2008, Honduran police have only solved TWO homicides. 

Such a fact underlines the statement that either the Honduran police are technically inept and/or indifferent, particularly considering that the US Government has attempted, albeit unsuccessfully, to improve police competency in the nation.

I strongly discourage all foreign travelers from visiting Honduras unless they are traveling on business.