[WHRD Alert] HONDURAS / Alternative measures denied to Nolvia Obando, imprisoned since March 16th for defending the land

The Court of Appeals has denied the alternative measures to confinement sought by Nolvia Obando. In keeping with the dictamen, Nolvia must remain in the preventive detention to which she has been subjected since last March 16th, when she was arrested in the course of a police eviction that she experienced along with her compañeras of Las Galileas Campesina Women’s Network.

The Court of Appeals dismissed the plea brought before it by Nolvia Obando’s legal representative; her appeal required the Court to uphold the defender’s human rights and the standards that consider preventive detention an exceptional measure that can only be implemented to a limited extent by rule of law with the presumption of innocence and commensurability.  Several violations of her rights preceded the dismissal of her appeal.  Last June 15th, for example, without the presentation of any argument whatsoever, the responsible parties failed to transport her to her own hearing in which the change in confinement measures was discussed.  There was also an unjustifiable delay in communicating the resolution of the hearing to Nolvia. This should have been communicated to her on Friday, June 16th, but was not done until the following week, thereby prolonging uncertainty in the defender and her environment, which constitutes another form of violence.

The day of the hearing, solidarity with Nolvia Obando was expressed in social networks through numerous messages of support from different parts of the world, and outside the Courthouse, where a group of women defenders from different territories set up camp. They included the Las Galileas Campesina Women’s Network, the National Council of Rural Workers (CNTC) and the National Network of Women Human Rights Defenders in Honduras, along with family members and close friends, whose intention was to shoulder responsibility for Nubia’s defense, demanding freedom and justice for her.

The deprivation of liberty that Nolvia is experiencing is not only unjust and disproportionate, given the fact that she has committed no crime whatsoever, but it also puts her life in danger, given the terrible conditions suffered by women prisoners in Honduras.  This became abundantly clear last June 20th with the deaths of at least 41 women held by the State in the National Women’s Penitentiary of Social Adaptation (PNFAS) located in the Támara Valley.

We of the National Network of Women Human Rights Defenders and IM-Defensoras call on all organizations of the human rights and social movement to stay abreast of these unjust legal proceedings now underway  against Nolvia Obando, and above all, to accompany her and demand her immediate freedom.

Nolvia Obando Turcios must be set free, and the harassment and stigmatization must end against her and her companions in the Las Galileas Campesina Network.

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