A group of armed men set fire to several houses in the Garifuna community of Nueva Armenia in Atlantida, Honduras this week according to the Black Fraternal Organization of Honduras.
Also known as OFRANEH, the Black Fraternal Organization denounced the attack and ongoing violence against their communities.
Two years ago the community reclaimed their ancestral lands, which had been previously appropriated by the Standard Fruit Company in the 1920s. This is the third occasion since August that the community has witnessed attacks by people acting on behalf the “landowners,” resulting in the destruction of their crops and homes.
On Aug. 6, members of the National Preventive Police burned down dozens of homes and arrested dozens of community members. In October, a group of men allegedly accompanied by police officers burned down the homes that were left standing in August.
"The State of Honduras intervene, capture and prosecute the perpetrators. We also insist that the Court of La Ceiba recognize the rights of the Garifuna's ancestral lands thus adhering to the jurisprudence of the Inter-American Justice System," OFRANEH demanded.
Nueva Armenia is located along the Papaloteca River and is one of the town's along the Honduran north coast most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
This news comes as United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announced the creation of a human rights office in the country. The U.N. Chief is scheduled to partake in a two-day fact-finding mission in Honduras, with the long-term aim to reduce violence, discuss citizen security and combat organized crime in the region.