The municipalities in which kidnappings were reported include: Districto Central (4), Jacaleapa (1), Trojes (1), Siguatepeque (1), Puerto Cortes (1), Lejamani (1), Tocoa (1), Tela (1), and Comayagua (1). Some would-be muggers and gang members keep to a daily schedule, riding city buses from one stop to the next, committing criminal acts with impunity along the way. The government places specially trained police forces in areas tourists frequent (e.g. In October 2019, a thief stole the side view mirrors from a U.S. employee’s personally owned vehicle while it was parked on a side street near the Embassy. Fire Department Ambulance is fully equipped with emergency medical supplies and medical staff. Even when traffic signals are working, drivers often ignore them. Criminals sometimes obtain personal information through social media, the internet, or a victim’s family member. Please note that all OSAC products are for internal U.S. private sector security purposes only. As of June 2019, almost half of more than 13,500 police officers evaluated by the commission had been removed for acts committed during their tenure as officers. ... Violence proliferated in Honduras amid general lawlessness in the wake of the 2009 U.S.-backed coup. Due to the lack of enforcement of traffic laws, travelers should make an extraordinary effort to drive defensively. Spurred by anger with the government over accusations of public corruption, allegations of involvement in narcotics trafficking, and efforts to pass controversial education reform, protests and demonstrations were near-daily occurrences at times during 2019. Resolution of disputes in court often takes years. Cruise ship industry contacts report that approximately one million U.S. citizens enter the country by ship every year, primarily in Roatán, but also in La Ceiba on the northern coast. Avoid traveling at night and always drive with doors locked and windows rolled up to deter potential robberies at traffic lights and on congested downtown streets. As of September, officials were debating whether to extend MACCIH’s mandate, which was set to expire at the end of 2019. However, protesters will also block, key intercity transportation routes and intracity intersections with burning tires, rocks and other debris, to include the roads leading to the international airports in Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula, and the CA-5 and CA-11 highways. Despite a recent downward trend, the murder rate remains among the highest in the world. otherwise distributing OSAC-derived information in a manner inconsistent with this policy may result in the discontinuation of OSAC support. As a result of Honduran government efforts in close cooperation with the United States, homicide rates have fallen from 86.0 per 100,000 residents in 2012 to 43.6 per 100,000 at the end of 2019. May 13, 2020. Officials say 2,241 kilograms of cocaine have been seized between January and July 2020, a little more than last year’s entire haul of 2,218 kilograms, Proceso Digital reported. The San Pedro Sula area has seen armed robberies against tourist vans, minibuses, and cars traveling from the airport to area hotels. For more in-depth information, review OSAC’s Honduras country page for original OSAC reporting, consular messages, and contact information, some of which may be available only to private-sector representatives with an OSAC password. There are no legal cases involving instances of terrorism affecting U.S. citizens or facilities brought before the Honduran judicial system, and no reports of judicial developments that would have a negative impact on U.S. counterterrorism efforts. The following diseases are prevalent in Honduras: Chikungunya, Dengue Fever, Malaria, and Zika. The report identifies institutional and human rights deficiencies, and highlights how lack of access to justice “has led to a structural impunity that perpetuates serious human rights violations.”, Human Rights Watch defends the rights of people in 90 countries worldwide, spotlighting abuses and bringing perpetrators to justice, Human Rights Watch is a 501(C)(3) nonprofit registered in the US under EIN: 13-2875808, Freedom of Expression, Association, and Assembly, Attacks on Lawyers, Human Rights Defenders, and Environmental Activists, Two Years After #MeToo Erupts, A New Treaty Anchors Workplace Shifts, Holding Companies to Account: Momentum Builds for Corporate Human Rights Duties, As Killer Robots Loom, Demands Grow to Keep Humans in Control of Use of Force, Shutting Down the Internet to Shut Up Critics, With Millions Out of School, the Countdown Begins to Get All Children into Quality, Accessible Education, Going to the Bank for Food, Not Money: The Growing Reality of Hunger in “Rich” Countries, one case documented by Human Rights Watch. ... Honduras elites blamed for violence against environmental activists. The U.S. Embassy estimates at least 30,000 U.S. citizens reside in Honduras. Cruise ship industry contacts report that approximately one million U.S. citizens enter the country by ship every year, primarily in Roatán, but also in La Ceiba on the northern coast. It is estimated there are around 23,000 gang members involved in turf wars and almost daily shoot-outs with police. Dial 911 for emergency or call (504) 2232-4092. However, when crime rates are as high as they are, optics are important: Both countries need to create the perception of making a concerted effort to combat this violence to defend their legitimacy, even while their strategies may undermine stated efforts of reining … PR Political Rights. As a result, there is no longer free travel between Honduras and Nicaragua. The government is implementing similar programs for other locations (e.g. For fire and public safety emergencies, dial 911. In May, MACCIH announced that it was investigating Lobo for allegedly laundering drug money for his electoral campaign. HMC’s lab was reviewed by the Regional Medical Laboratory Scientist and found to be up to U.S. standards and quality assurance practices. Inhumane conditions, including overcrowding, inadequate nutrition, and poor sanitation are endemic in Honduran prisons. However, the commission has been criticized for its opacity and several of the almost 6,000 dismissed officers have been arrested by police for alleged criminal acts committed after their dismissal. Meanwhile, 59% reported having been assaulted at least once while a passenger in a taxi (Colectivo and Rolatero) in the past 12 months, 32% twice, 6% three times, and 3% more than three times. Chanting, “long li… Gracias a Dios is a remote location where narcotics trafficking is frequent, infrastructure is weak, government services are limited, and police/military presence is scarce. While there are no areas in major urban cities free of violent crime, notably dangerous locations in Tegucigalpa include the areas surrounding Suyapa Cathedral, downtown Comayagüela, downtown Tegucigalpa, and neighborhoods in the outskirts of the city that are generally controlled by gangs. He is set to be sentenced in January 2020. Violence based on gender identity or sexual orientation is widespread in Honduras. Thefts, break-ins, assaults, rapes, and murders do occur. (File) 15 May 2020. . The Honduras Country Council generally meets monthly on a rotating basis in Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula and has approximately 70 members. There are an estimated 7,000-10,000 gang members in a country with an approximate population of ten million people. President Hernández, who has not been charged, has “categorically denied” the accusations. LGBTI+ travelers should exercise caution, especially when expressing affection in public. OSAC encourages travelers to, to gain baseline knowledge of security conditions in Honduras. Honduras + 7 more. Honduras decided in late 2018, based on reciprocity, to institute the same reporting requirement. Review OSAC’s reports, The CDC offers additional information on vaccines and health guidance for, The Honduras Country Council generally meets monthly on a rotating basis in Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula and has approximately 70 members. The Honduras Medical Center (HMC) is the primary private hospital that the Embassy uses for emergency response and when hospitalization is required. To understand violence in Honduras, you have to understand one negative, recurring cycle. Same-sex sexual activity is legal in Honduras. Counterfeit medicines are available in, (private home-operated convenience stores), but have also been reported in, Same-sex sexual activity is legal in Honduras. Murder – In 2011 Honduras experienced a peak in murder rates making Honduras the holder of the highest homicide … Roads have poor lighting and markings. Following anticorruption protests in 2015, President Hernandez signed an agreement with the Organization of American States to form the Mission Against Corruption and Impunity in Honduras (MACCIH). or the United States Government, except as otherwise noted (e.g., travel advisories, public statements). UNICEF reports that a third of all Honduran girls marry before 18. Review OSAC’s report, All That You Should Leave Behind. Driving in Honduras can be dangerous. Do not travel to Gracias a Dios Department due to crime. Under the new criminal code, women and girls who terminate pregnancies can face prison sentences of up to six years. According to the Honduran police, 2,322 murders were registered as of mid-August 2019, and in the same period of 2020 there were 1,934, in a population of 9.3 million inhabitants. Hondurans continue to be affected by MS-13 and Calle 18 gang activity in cities such as Tegucigalpa, Choloma, La Ceiba, Tela, and San Pedro Sula. December 2020: New UN data reveals that of 5.5 million people affected by successive tropical storms Eta and Iota in Honduras and Guatemala last month: 400,000 people remain in ill-equipped temporary shelters, while 140,000 homes were destroyed in the storms.As many as 330,000 remain cut off from emergency assistance by destroyed roads and disrupted communications … Review the State Department’s webpage on security for. Travelers should be aware, however, that the assistance the Embassy can provide is limited to making sure U.S. citizens are not treated differently from local detainees and providing them with a list of local attorneys. The location and timing of criminal activity are unpredictable. Members of the LGBTI+ community have reported violent assaults because of gender identity and sexual orientation. Violent crime is rampant in Honduras. Port agencies have worked to improve taxi service to/from ports. Since 2012, the Honduran government signed agreements with Transparency International, the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative, and the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative. The level of violence in Honduras has gotten attention, but the deeper cultural factors at work are less often plumbed. In October, the IACHR published its report on the human rights situation in Honduras following a visit to the country in 2018. Despite being considered the best private hospital in Tegucigalpa, it is not Joint Commission International (JCI) accredited; JCI is an independent, not-for-profit organization that evaluates and accredits healthcare organizations. Tweet. Due to the remote nature of these areas, the government’s ability to respond to violence or other problems is often very limited, as is access to medical facilities. Medical care is limited. Passengers on public buses have been the victims of robbery at roadblocks and bus stops, during daytime and nighttime hours. Extortion is a key source of … Additionally, illegal drugs are for sale in many of the popular tourist areas during the evening hours. The municipalities in which kidnappings were reported include: Districto Central (4), Jacaleapa (1), Trojes (1), Siguatepeque (1), Puerto Cortes (1), Lejamani (1), Tocoa (1), Tela (1), and Comayagua (1). The CA-4 agreement among El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras allows for the inspection-free movement of citizens among these countries, reducing overall inspection at land crossings. The IACHR expressed concern over the use of violence and other measures to prevent people from leaving the country, and urged Honduras to guarantee the migrants’ rights, including the right to leave any country. Many of these U.S. citizens are church and humanitarian aid volunteers working throughout the country, including in gang-controlled neighborhoods. Counterfeit U.S. currency is also common. Honduras lacks the infrastructure to maintain water purity and food safety. Find contact information for available medical services and available air ambulance services on the U.S. Embassy/Consulate, Travelers are responsible for ensuring that they have adequate health coverage while in Honduras. While there are no areas in major urban cities free of violent crime, notably dangerous locations in Tegucigalpa include the areas surrounding Suyapa Cathedral, downtown Comayagüela, downtown Tegucigalpa, and neighborhoods in the outskirts of the city that are generally controlled by gangs. Hours of Operation: Monday-Thursday, 0730-1630; Friday, 0800-1500, Tel: +504-2236-9320; After Hours: +504-2236-8497, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/embajadahonduras/, Banco Atlántida Building, 11th Floor, across the street from Central Park, San Pedro Sula, Hours of Operation: Monday-Thursday, 1200-1600, Website: https://hn.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/spsca/. During 2019, multiple vehicles belonging to U.S. and Honduran employees of the U.S. Embassy were burglarized and/or vandalized on side streets around the Embassy compound. These figures also reveal an estimated one out of five rural Hondurans is trying to survive on less than a mere $1.90 per day.Since poverty and criminal activity seem to have a close correlational relationship, it is no surprise that … Those traveling with tour/missionary groups report fewer criminal incidents. This includes the crime of “public disturbances,” vaguely defined to include “violence or serious intimidation [that] frightens a population or part of it.” The code also uses overly broad language in defining the crimes of “illicit assembly,” “demonstrations,” and “terrorism.” In July 2019, the IACHR and OHCRH expressed concern over these provisions and called for their review. The government lacks resources to investigate and prosecute cases; police often lack vehicles/fuel to respond to calls for assistance. U.S. Department of State. There are no legal cases involving instances of terrorism affecting U.S. citizens or facilities brought before the Honduran judicial system, and no reports of judicial developments that would have a negative impact on U.S. counterterrorism efforts. The Honduras government keeps no data on killings based on sexual orientation or gender identity, but the Lesbian Network Cattrachas reported that between January and August 2019, at least 26 LGBT people had been killed. Review OSAC’s report, If you or someone you know becomes the victim of a crime, contact the local police and U.S. Embassy Tegucigalpa. Security In Transit: Airplanes, Public Transport, and Overnights. Only sealed commercial water containers (bottles) are considered safe to drink. In October, María Digna Montero, a member of the Honduran Black Fraternal Organization (OFRANEH) and a defender of the indigenous Garifuna land and culture, was shot and killed in her home in Colón by unknown individuals. Always carry a mobile phone in case of emergency. In addition to complying with local laws, companies involved in natural resource extraction or energy generation should ensure they fully consult with communities in accordance with international standards. The country does not appear to be a terrorist safe haven. Although Honduras has made some progress, many perceive the property registration system as unreliable and a constraint on investment, particularly in the Bay Islands. This is an annual report produced in conjunction with the Regional Security Office at the U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa. In November 2019, Tegucigalpa authorities began developing a luxury housing project in the La Tigra bioreserve, just outside of the city. Although its specialists occasionally cannot provide the U.S. standard of care, the hospital and diagnostic departments do have the capability to provide most medical procedures. Proportion of ever-partnered women aged 15-49 years experiencing intimate partner physical and/or sexual violence in the last 12 months. The Honduras Medical Center (HMC) is the primary private hospital that the Embassy uses for emergency response and when hospitalization is required. Cruise ship passengers should take safety precautions, avoid unfamiliar areas, and book only with reputable tour companies during their stopover in Honduras. HMC’s lab was reviewed by the Regional Medical Laboratory Scientist and found to be up to U.S. standards and quality assurance practices. The current U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory at the date of this report’s publication assesses Honduras at Level 3, indicating travelers should reconsider travel due to crime. Violent transnational criminal organizations are also involved in narcotics trafficking and other illicit commerce. In December 2018, the legislature approved a resolution to extend the mandate of a Special Commission for Police Reform Restructuring, charged with removing active members of the National Police who do not comply with their duties, through January 2022. While hurricane winds are a concern, much of the damage to infrastructure comes as a result of the ensuing flooding and rock/mudslides. Honduras has one of the highest homicide rates in the world. Violence linked to land disputes also occurs, particularly in the Bay Islands and Bajo Aguan Valley in northern Honduras. In February, Salomón Matute and his son Juan Samael Matute, both Tolupan indigenous persons who belonged to the San Francisco Locomapa tribe and the Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice (MADJ), died of gunshot wounds despite “precautionary measures” granted by the IACHR in 2013 to ensure the government protected them. Review OSAC’s reports, There are an estimated 7,000-10,000 gang members in a country with an approximate population of ten million people. Heavily-armed gunmen storm a courtroom in Honduras to free a top leader in the violent MS-13 gang, killing 4 police officers in the process. Home to the second biggest barrier reef in the world, beaches, and sparkling turquoise sea, as well as a whole host of Mayan ruins, amazing coffee, and the second largest rainforest in the Americas, Honduras is extremely biodiverse: there are 770 bird species alone.. The Violence Observatory at the Honduran National Autonomous University claims that at least 15 women have been murdered in the first two weeks of 2020. Those traveling with tour/missionary groups report fewer criminal incidents. Honduras is one of the most impoverished nations in Central America. Gangs are not reluctant to use violence, and specialize in murder-for-hire, carjacking, extortion, and other violent street crime. Kidnappings declined by 82% since 2013, from 92 in 2013 to 14 in 2018, and 12 in 2019. Most of the persons included there were displaced for resisting extortion by the maras and gangs, while others had received direct threats for being linked to their threatened relatives. 2 4. According to a November 2019 study entitled “Plan for Sustainable Urban Mobility for the Central District and Comayaguela,” 48% of passengers reported having been assaulted one time in the past 12 months while traveling on a, , 31% twice, 11% three times, and 10% more than three times. Gangs control some of the taxi services. Honduras lacks the infrastructure to maintain water purity and food safety. There is street crime even in gated communities commonly referred to locally as. In contrast, violence targeting civilians has decreased significantly in all three countries of the Northern Triangle since the official start of the pandemic in March. The study considered the city of San Pedro Sula in northern Honduras, due to its high levels of violence and displacement. In 2019, there were 1,500 traffic fatalities throughout the country. Nine significant tropical storms/hurricanes since 1995 have affected Honduras. However, there can be communal tension over land ownership, natural resource allocation, and exploitation. Except in some very rural locations, police are aware of a U.S. citizen detainee's right to contact the Embassy. However, kidnapping figures are likely lower than reality, as families of kidnapping victims often pay ransoms without reporting these crimes to police out of fear of retribution. ... At year’s end, the government was negotiating with the OAS over MACCIH’s mandate, which was to expire in early 2020. According to a November 2019 study entitled “Plan for Sustainable Urban Mobility for the Central District and Comayaguela,” 48% of passengers reported having been assaulted one time in the past 12 months while traveling on a Rapidito, 31% twice, 11% three times, and 10% more than three times. The ambulance does not have paramedics or emergency medical equipment; it functions solely as transport to hospitals. Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Publishing or Many activists report that crimes committed against the LGBTI+ community go unpunished. Airlines estimate that approximately 250,000 U.S. citizens flew into Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, or Roatán in 2019. There is no information to suggest that criminals specifically target U.S. citizens or foreigners. Some passengers opt to travel armed when using public transportation, which sometimes results in armed confrontations where innocent bystanders are injured or killed in the crossfire. Those planning travel to Gracias a Dios should consider postponing their travel. Here are 10 facts about violence in Honduras. Migrants and Refugees. Although reports of kidnappings have dropped considerably in recent years, they continue to affect both the local and expatriate communities, with victims sometimes paying large ransoms for the prospect of release. Review OSAC’s reports, The Overseas Traveler’s Guide to ATM Skimmers & Fraud and Taking Credit. Exercise extreme caution driving on isolated stretches of road and passing other vehicles on mountainous curves. Most demonstrations were concentrated in or around city centers, public buildings, and other public areas. Despite being considered the best private hospital in Tegucigalpa, it is not Joint Commission International (JCI) accredited; JCI is an independent, not-for-profit organization that evaluates and accredits healthcare organizations. Lobo denies the allegations. The regulations were repealed in April, but protests continued. More demonstrations followed over corruption allegations implicating President Hernández. In 2011-2012, there were 86 homicides per 100,000 people. Encuesta Nacional de Salud y Demografía 2011-2012. Honduran law requires access to buildings for persons with disabilities; however, there are limited facilities for individuals with disabilities. CHICAGO — The fate of a boy brought to the U.S. as a toddler when his family fled Honduras remains undecided Wednesday, after a judge ordered the case continued until 2020. There are no known international terrorist groups operating in Honduras. Nicaragua used to be part of the CA-4 agreement, but in late 2017 began requiring travelers to register their travel purpose and destination online seven days in advance. After a two-week trial in the US, in October, Hernández was convicted of drug conspiracy. The Mission to Support the Fight against Corruption and Impunity in Honduras (MACCIH), established in 2016 through an agreement between the government and the Organization of American States (OAS), has investigated a small number of cases involving corruption of senior officials. In 2019, there was one murder case involving a resident U.S. citizen in Roatán. In November, the legislature postponed the entry into force of the penal code, which was planned for November 2019, to May 2020. A December 2018 study by the National Committee on the Prevention of Torture, Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, an official body, reported that the country’s prisons held 21,004 inmates, a figure double that of a decade earlier. Credit card skimming is common. In November, the Honduran government and the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), installed an evaluation board to review the performance of MACCIH, prior to examining whether or not to extend its mandate. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Honduras (OACNUDH) and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) expressed concern over reports that security forces fired live ammunition into demonstrations. Every 23 hours, a woman violently loses her life in Honduras, said on Tuesday, the director of the Violence Observatory of the National Autonomous University, Migdonia Ayestas. 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