HONDURAS - URGENT ACTION: CALL YOUR MEMBER OF CONGRESS AND SENATOR ABOUT THE "AHUAS MASSACRE" U.S.-D.E.A. Must be Held Accountable
Please write your Congressional Representative and Senator to insist that the U.S. end its so-called drug war in Central America and that it fully assist in obtaining justice for the victims of the May 11, 2012 massacre in Ahuas, Honduras, during a joint operation by DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) agents and a special Honduran police unit created by the DEA.
Below, find a sample letter and a list of key members of the House Judiciary Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee, which have oversight of the DEA. When you write your Congress Member and Senator, please emphasize the DEA Oversight hearing on June 20, 2012, but after the hearing still write asking offices to direct questions to the Department of Justice.
MORE INFORMATION, QUESTIONS: Annie Bird (email@example.com)
CALL YOUR MEMBER OF CONGRESS AND SENATOR ABOUT THE "AHUAS MASSACRE" U.S.-D.E.A. Must be Held Accountable
Dear Representative / Senator X:
[IF A HOUSE MEMBER - remind them that on June 20, 2012 the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee will hold a regular oversight hearing for the Drug Enforcement Agency.]
I urge that you ask specific questions to the DEA representatives regarding a recent interdiction operation in the Moskitia region of Honduras that resulted in the deaths of four Miskitu Afro-indigenous villagers.
On May 11 at about 2:30am, a passenger boat - which for many years has regularly traveled the Patuca River in Honduras, a region without roads - was approaching its destination in the town of Ahuas, after traveling about 8 hours up river from the town of Barra Patuca, when it was fired upon U.S. State Department titled helicopters taking part in a joint Drug Enforcement Agency and Honduran police action. Two pregnant women, a 21 year old man, and a 14 year old boy were all killed; the boy shot dead in front of his mother. Four more were gravely injured. Boats frequently travel long distances at night to avoid intense midday heat.
After the shooting, eyewitnesses report that apparent DEA agents took no measures to assist the injured victims but instead prevented family members from providing the victims with timely assistance for two to three hours.
The U.S. must fully investigate the May 11 incident, but to date the US government has indicated that it is relying primarily on the Honduran government investigation, even though the State Department itself reports that the Honduran justice system does not prosecute crimes, especially those committed by State Security forces.
Militarizing Central America will not solve America's drug problem, it will only increase violence, costing thousands of lives in Central America and costing US tax payers millions of dollars badly needed at home.
PLEASE ASK THESE QUESTIONS OF THE DEA, THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AND STATE DEPARTMENT.
Why did DEA trained and supported Honduran Tactical Response Team of the Honduras national police, accompanied by DEA agents, a team with night vision capability, shoot repeatedly at a boat full of passengers, including children and pregnant women? Why was no action taken to warn the passenger boat away from the interdiction?
Why, after the shooting incident reportedly left four dead and four injured, was no action taken by Honduran or U.S. agents to provide medical attention to those injured? Why were family members of victims who attempted to provide assistance to the victims of the shooting prevented from doing so by US and Honduran agents according to various eye-witness testimonies?
Are all operations of a similar nature to the May 11 interdiction operation being suspended?
Is a full investigation of the May 11 incident that led to the tragic deaths being carried out in a thorough and impartial manner by our government, and measures being taken to avoid potential future killings of innocent bystanders? Are DEA and other U.S. authorities working to ensure that those responsible for any innocent life are brought to justice, and the surviving victims and victims' families are duly compensated?
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES JUDICIARY COMMITTEE, SUBCOMMITTEE ON CRIME, TERRORISM AND HOMELAND SECURITY
- Hon. John Conyers Jr., Ranking Member, (D) Michigan, 14th, 202-225-5126, http://conyers.house.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.OnlineContactForm
- Hon. Bobby Scott, (D) Virginia, 3rd, (202) 225-8351, https://forms.house.gov/bobbyscott/webforms/issue_subscribe.htm
- Hon. Steve Cohen , (D) Tennessee, 9th , (202) 225-3265, https://cohenforms.house.gov/Forms/WriteYourRep/
- Hon. Hank Johnson, (D) Georgia, 4th, (202) 225-1605, https://hankjohnsonforms.house.gov/contact-form.shtml
- Hon. Judy Chu, (D) California, 32nd, (202) 225-5464, http://chu.house.gov/connect-with-me/email-judy
- Hon. Ted Deutch, (D) Florida, 19th, 202-225-3001, https://teddeutch.house.gov/forms/writeyourrep/default.aspx
- Hon. Sheila Jackson Lee, (D) Texas, 18th, (202) 225-3317, http://jacksonlee.house.gov/contact/
- Hon. Mike Quigley, (D) Illinois, 5th, (202) 225-4061, https://forms.house.gov/quigley/webforms/issue_subscribe.htm
- Hon. Jared Polis, (D) Colorado, (202) 225-2161, http://polis.house.gov/Contact/
- Hon. Lamar Smith, Chairman Judiciary Committee, (R) Texas, 21st, 202-225-4236, http://lamarsmith.house.gov/Contact/
- Hon. Jim Sensenbrenner Jr., Subcommittee Chairman, (R) Wisconsin, 5th, (202) 225-5101, http://sensenbrenner.house.gov/Contact/Email.htm
- Hon. Ted Poe, (R) Texas, 2nd, (202) 225-6565, https://forms.house.gov/poe/webforms/zipauthen_contact.shtml
OTHER HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE MEMBERS
- Hon. Berman, (D) California, 28th
- Hon. Nadler, (D) New York, 8th
- Hon. Watt, (D) North Carolina, 12th
- Hon. Lofgren, (D) California, 16th
- Hon. Waters, (D) California, 35th
- Hon. Sánchez, (D) California, 39th
- Hon. Goodlatte, (R) Virginia, 6th
- Hon. Lungren, (R) California, 3rd
- Hon. Forbes (R) Virginia, 4th
- Hon. Chaffetz, (R) Utah, 3rd
- Hon. Griffin, (R) Arkansas, 2nd
- Hon. Marino, (R) Pennsylvania, 10th
- Hon. Gowdy, (R) South Carolina, 4th
- Hon. Adams, (R) Florida, 24th
- Hon. Amodei, (R) Nevada, 2nd
KEY MEMBERS OF SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE AND THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON CRIME AND TERRORISM
- Patrick Leahy, Judiciary Committee Chairman, Vermont
- Chuck Grassley, Judiciary Committee Ranking Member, Iowa
- Sheldon Whitehouse, Chairman Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism, Rhode Island
- Jon Kyl, Ranking Member Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism, Arizona
- Herb Kohl, Wisconsin
- Dianne Feinstein, California
- Dick Durbin, Illinois
- Amy Klobuchar, Minnesota
- Christopher Coons, Delaware
OTHER SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE MEMBERS
- Orrin Hatch, Utah
- Chuck Schumer, New York
- Jeff Sessions, Alabama
- Lindsey Graham, South Carolina
- John Cornyn, Texas
- Al Franken, Minnesota
- Michael S. Lee, Utah
- Tom Coburn, Oklahoma
- Richard Blumenthal, Connecticut
Rights Action (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Please write your Congressional Representative and Senator
- Please re-publish and re-post this article, citing author and source
- Donate to support: victim and survivor, founded human rights organizations, and indigenous and campesino organizations.
- Create your own email and mail lists and re-distribute our information.
for the emergency medical needs of the Ahuas Massacre victims and for community organizations in Honduras working for community development, protection of the environment, human rights and justice, make check payable to "Rights Action" and mail to:
UNITED STATES: Box 50887, Washington DC, 20091-0887
CANADA: 552 - 351 Queen St. E, Toronto ON, M5A-1T8