Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

World

Gangs, officials square off in Honduras over campaign access

-

Hundreds of police and soldiers fanned out across many of Honduras' poorest slums on Wednesday after gang members threatened people campaigning for election candidates.

With a November 26 general election looming the authorities rolled in in force. They checked IDs while stopping people and cars in poorer areas of the capital Tegucigalpa, the second city San Pedro Sula, the Caribbean port of La Ceiba and other areas.

Gangs including one called Barrio 18 have been threatening campaigners ahead of the vote. Among those harassed were people canvassing for President Juan Orlando Hernandez, who is seeking re-election.

The spokesman for the National Inter-Agency Security Force, Lieutenant Colonel Santos Nolasco, said gang members had stopped campaign volunteers from posting campaign posters and other materials in largely gang-run neighborhoods.

"What we want is for people to vote with confidence" on election day, he said.

The candidate of the conservative Liberal Party, Luis Zelaya, told AFP that even in many neighborhoods of Tegucigalpa gang intimidation made it impossible for volunteers to campaign.

Hernandez, a 48-year-old US-educated businessman, is seen as the frontrunner in the presidential election. He took office in 2014.

More than 25,000 gang members operate in the main cities of Honduras where they extort money, murder and traffic in drugs.

Hundreds of police and soldiers fanned out across many of Honduras’ poorest slums on Wednesday after gang members threatened people campaigning for election candidates.

With a November 26 general election looming the authorities rolled in in force. They checked IDs while stopping people and cars in poorer areas of the capital Tegucigalpa, the second city San Pedro Sula, the Caribbean port of La Ceiba and other areas.

Gangs including one called Barrio 18 have been threatening campaigners ahead of the vote. Among those harassed were people canvassing for President Juan Orlando Hernandez, who is seeking re-election.

The spokesman for the National Inter-Agency Security Force, Lieutenant Colonel Santos Nolasco, said gang members had stopped campaign volunteers from posting campaign posters and other materials in largely gang-run neighborhoods.

“What we want is for people to vote with confidence” on election day, he said.

The candidate of the conservative Liberal Party, Luis Zelaya, told AFP that even in many neighborhoods of Tegucigalpa gang intimidation made it impossible for volunteers to campaign.

Hernandez, a 48-year-old US-educated businessman, is seen as the frontrunner in the presidential election. He took office in 2014.

More than 25,000 gang members operate in the main cities of Honduras where they extort money, murder and traffic in drugs.

Written By

With 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world as a leading global news agency. AFP provides fast, comprehensive and verified coverage of the issues affecting our daily lives.

You may also like:

Business

Screen-grab from video showing Syrah Resources Balama Graphite Project in Mozambique. Source - Syrah Resources Tesla is turning to Mozambique for a key component...

World

Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani prisoner in the United States whose release was reportedly demanded by a Texas hostage-taker this weekend.

Sports

Novak Djokovic grew up with NATO bombs raining down on Serbia but emerged to become one of the greatest tennis players of all time.

Business

People could afford to be people, not just paranoid bill-paying machines.