Chicago, September 26, 2019 — Yesterday, the Trump administration and the government of Honduras reached an agreement at the United Nations General Assembly that would allow the United States to send asylum seekers to Honduras,. The agreement has been brought to light only days after the US and El Salvador signed a similar agreement. Óscar Chacón, executive director of Alianza Americas, has issued the following statement:
“Honduras cannot be an asylum country because it lacks the basic conditions of security and safety for its own people, much less those from other countries who need protection. As we have previously documented, violence, poverty and corruption are pervasive and deeply embedded in all aspects of the government in Honduras. These conditions have worsened steadily since the 2009 coup d’etat. More than 67 % of the population lives in poverty. Journalists and rights defenders are in constant danger. Furthermore, climate change, compounded by violence and impunity, is forcing Hondurans in rural areas to leave their homes and search for safety elsewhere. Last year’s fraudulent election of Juan Orlando Hernández, who was recently connected to a major drug trafficking case in the U.S., has been the latest development in an ongoing political crisis that has resulted in widespread protests, persecution, and state repression. It is absurd that a country forcing so many people to flee can itself be considered a country with the capacity to provide asylum.
This latest agreement with Honduras is yet another tactic of a U.S. political agenda fueled by white supremacy to criminalize, deter and endanger the lives of migrants who are fleeing persecution. The agreement is part of a larger strategy from the Trump administration to pressure weak countries into blocking asylum seekers from arriving at the US border. Honduras suffers from high murder rates, impunity, and corruption due to a long history of failed US policies and meddling in this region – including support for last year’s illegal and fraudulent presidential election. By returning asylum-seekers to Honduras, the Trump administration is illegally and immorally putting in harms’ way people fleeing from conditions created by U.S. policies.”
Alianza Americas is a network of 50 immigrant-led organizations representing more than 100,000 families across the United States. It is the only US-based organization rooted in Latino and Caribbean immigrant communities that works transnationally to create an inclusive, equitable, and sustainable way of life. Learn more at alianzaamericas.org.