Campaigners call for better protection of activists after killing of Honduran land rights' leader

    by Thomson Reuters Foundation
    Thursday, 17 March 2016 20:56 GMT

Environmental and indigenous rights leader Berta Caceres, who was shot dead in her native Honduras, is pictured in a handout from the Goldman Environmental Prize, an award she won in 2015.

The killing of a leading Honduran indigenous environmentalist sparked global condemnation, with campaigners calling on the government to do more to protect land rights activists.

Berta Caceres, winner of the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize in 2015,  was shot dead by two men at her home after she and other activists had received death threats because of their protests against the construction of the $50 million Agua Zarca dam that threatened to displace hundreds of Indians.

The Central American country of 8.5 million people has seen a surge in large resource projects including dams, mines and agricultural plantations, and this growth is linked to killings of activists, campaigners said.

Of all the land rights activists murdered worldwide, nearly three-quarters of the deaths were in Central and South America, Global Witness reported in 2014, with indigenous people disproportionately targeted.

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