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  • Xiomara Castro is the first woman presidential candidate in Honduras.

    Xiomara Castro is the first woman presidential candidate in Honduras. | Photo: EFE

Xiomara Castro pledges to unite the country’s impoverished masses against foreign-backed wealthy elites.

Honduras’ democratic socialist Liberty and Refoundation party released an updated platform Wednesday, promising to combat imperialism and eradicate poverty if elected in November.

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Xiomara Castro, the Libre, PLN, party presidential candidate, pledged to unite the country’s impoverished masses against foreign-backed wealthy elites.

“Honduras has historically been subjected to the anti-patriotic behavior of its governing political class and economically powerful groups that undermine the common good,” Castro wrote in Libre’s updated platform.

Reflecting on the current administration, she vowed to fight “imperialist foreign powers that have made Honduras an impoverished backward nation relegated to the last places of Latin America.” Honduras has the most unequal wealth distribution in Latin America and the sixth most in the world, according to the World Bank.

Castro won Libre's primary elections earlier this month and is expected to face off against incumbent president and right-wing National Party, PNH, candidate Juan Orlando Hernandez and Liberal Party candidate Luis Zelaya.

The PNH and PLH have ruled Honduras since the country officially declared independence in 1838, with the exception of intermittent military dictatorships. Both parties have committed mass human rights violations against anti-imperialist and socialist movements within the country throughout their respective tenures.

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“We condemn the existence of structural conditions and cultural patterns that discriminate and subordinate the participation of women and young people in the different spheres of society,” Castro also wrote in the platform, addressing Honduras’ high rate of femicide and violence against youth. “One of our main priorities is to transform the ideas, attitudes and behaviors that generate this discrimination.”

The race between projected front-runners Hernandez and Castro will mark the second time the two candidates face off in a presidential race. Castro lost by a small margin to Hernandez in the 2013 election amid widespread accusations of electoral fraud.

Castro is married to former President Manuel Zelaya, who was overthrown in a U.S.-backed military coup in 2009. She co-founded Libre in 2011 as the political arm of Honduras’ National Popular Resistance Front that led mass protests against Zelaya’s ouster.

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