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  • Security forces try to evict students from UNAH campus, Tegucigalpa, Honduras, July 1, 2019.

    Security forces try to evict students from UNAH campus, Tegucigalpa, Honduras, July 1, 2019. | Photo: Twitter/ @izquierdadiario

Published 2 July 2019

Human rights defenders are worried about a military police crackdown on demonstrations.

Students occupied were continuing Tuesday their occupation of the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) campuses in San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa which began Monday in support of nationwide demonstrations which have been carried out by doctors and teachers in favor of public healthcare and education services since April.

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The students also announced the creation of the Coalition in Defense of the UNAH, a university that was invaded by military police last week amidst massive protests against right-wing President Juan Orlando Hernandez (JOH).

"This crisis is a consequence of a historical violation of fundamental rights, deterioration of the rule of law and erratic and corrupt practices of politicians and decision makers," the Company of Jesus in Honduras said through a press statement.

The group also warned of the high risk awaiting the prosters who have been taking to the streets as the JOH administration has given teh green light to the military to repress indiscriminately the wide-spread protests.

The UNAH authorities announced Monday the resumption of classes, which had been suspended since the Honduran security forces opened fire on students and wounded four people on June 25.

"We want to attend classes but the university is not an island. We are part of what the Honduran society lives," Jorge Jimenez, a medical student, told Radio America.

In Tegucigalpa, high school students blocked streets around the Tech Institute of Honduras. The military police fired teargas and arrested several students, one of whom was injured, according to local media.

This endless wave of protests began to unfold on April 26 when the National Congress passed the "Law for Restructuring and Transforming the Health and Education Sectors," a reform backed by the right-wing president which seeks the privatization of health and education facilities.​​​​​​​

Although such law was repealed on June 2, Hondurans did not stop demonstrating and demanding the resignation of the president. He is the last link in a series of U.S. backed leaders who took office since the military coup that overthrew President Manuel Zelaya on June 28, 2009.

The leftist leader, who was trying to introduce land reforms and calling for a constituent assembly, was kidnapped by soldiers who flew him to Costa Rica. The Honduran military-installed then the National Assembly President Roberto Micheletti as interim president.

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