In a letter to the Honduran Ambassador in the UK, NGOs and individuals committed to social justice and human rights have condemned in the strongest possible terms the murder of Berta Cáceres, the inspiring and internationally-renowned social activist who spent her life fighting for and defending indigenous peoples’ rights to their lands. In particular, Berta focussed on defending them from the terrible impact of destructive mining projects. Berta was co-founder and General Coordinator of the Council of Indigenous and Popular Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), a social and political organisation supporting the indigenous and popular movements in Honduras. She became a key leader in the Lenca struggle against the Agua Zarca Dam, a controversial development project which did not have the consent of local communities.
As a direct result of her human and environmental work, Berta was granted emergency protection measures by the Inter American Commission for Human Rights (IACHR). Despite several attempts to kill her and an escalation in threats in the weeks prior to her assassination, the Honduran government failed to provide Berta with the necessary police protection. Had the government implemented it, she might still be alive today.