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Human rights promoters and journalists may be unaware of a powerful tool to curb impunity among military and police that receive U.S. assistance: the “Leahy Law.”

Introduced by U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy in the 1990s, the Leahy Law prohibits the United States from providing assistance to any foreign military or police unit if there is credible information that such unit has committed grave human rights violations with impunity. If the foreign country takes “effective steps to bring the responsible members of the security forces unit to justice,” the U.S. government can resume assistance to that unit.

 

Over the past decade, Honduras has become one of the most dangerous places in the world. In 2013 the country recorded the highest global murder rate, with 79 homicides per 100,000 residents. Honduras has one of the most unequal income distributions and some of the highest under-employment and dropout rates in Latin America, all contributing factors to the rise of street gangs and the recent surge in emigration to the United States. The violence, concentrated in cities and along its border with Guatemala, can largely be attributed to three factors: the international drug trade, gangs and weak security and justice institutions. 

Recent Reports

May 3, 2017
  Press Release Washington, DC – The number of US foreign military trainees increased substantially...
Sep 20, 2016
El Salvador cerró el año 2015 con 6,657 homicidios, reemplazando a Honduras como la capital mundial...
Aug 12, 2016
(UPDATE) The Center for International Policy (CIP) and the Latin America Working Group Education...
Apr 20, 2015
Tunisia is widely credited with initiating the wave of revolutions that swept the Arab world in...
Mar 10, 2015
With a population of just over 8 million people, Honduras is home to some of the highest poverty...