Journalists on the front lines in Honduras
Honduras has become akin to a war zone, since the 2009 coup that deposed the former president, Manuel Zelaya. The country of around 8 million people, bordered by Guatemala, Nicaragua, the Pacific Ocean, and Caribbean Sea, is among the most dangerous places on earth.
The Committee to Protect Journalists, the Associated Press, and Reporters Without Borders have all reported that Honduras currently possesses the highest homicide rate in the world (estimates range from 82-90 people murdered per 100,000 in 2010).
The 2009 constitutional crisis began when then-president Zeyala planned a referendum to change the constitution. That set off what most of the international community considers a coup. The coup and constitutional crisis that enveloped Honduras, combined with high poverty and unemployment rates, and one of Latin America’s largest disparities in wealth, have all contributed to a wave of political and economic instability. This instability paved the way for a drastic increase in violence and organized crime.
Much of the violence has been drug-related, as Mexican cartels, such as the Zetas, attempt to stamp their authority on key trade routes that traverse Central America. But police and military forces have also colluded in such cartel activity.
Honduras is also a danger zone for journalists, many of whom self-censor for their own safety. Since 1992, nineteen journalists have been killed in the country, with fifteen of those cases going uninvestigated.
Global journalist sat down with Marco Caceres, editor of Honduras Weekly, about the dangers and challenges that journalists face in Honduras.