December 7, 2017 — On December 3, Pope Francis told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square that he is praying for the people of Honduras, who have been embroiled in a violent political crisis after a delayed vote count in a recent presidential election. The Jesuits of Canada and the United States echo the Holy Father’s prayers and share the strong condemnation expressed by the Jesuits of Central America in denouncing Honduras’ Supreme Electoral Tribunal.
Calling out the Tribunal’s “lack of professionalism and ethics” because of its systematic failure to track and report the election results, the Central American Jesuits state, “It is no longer just a suspicion, but a certainty,” that the election has been grossly manipulated and influenced by the state in an attempt to disregard the will of the people of Honduras.
We stand with our brother Jesuits of Central America, especially those from Honduras, as they denounce the repression of the Honduran people by government authorities and in their long-lasting and peaceful fight for a more just and democratic Honduras.
We reaffirm the right of the Honduran people to peacefully protest in order to protect their sacrosanct electoral right. All the more, we remind Honduran authorities of their utmost obligation to accompany and protect their citizens.
Along with the Honduran Bishops, we urge “a frank, effective and creative dialogue that will permit us to reach the minimum agreements needed for governability and governance, restoration of the peace and civic coexistence in our Honduras.”
We join local and international organizations present in Honduras, in echoing the call from the Honduran people in asking all governments to take a genuine stand for democracy for the people of Honduras. Finally, we call upon the governments of the U.S. and Canada to support calls for an independent and transparent vote recount and urge them to demand that the Honduran government honor the rights of the Honduran people to peacefully protest and express their opinions.