Berta Cáceres was an internationally renowned activist who was shot dead in 2016 after a long battle against corporate power. She led her commuity’s struggle to stop construction of an internationally financed hydroelectric dam in Honduras, on the Gualcarque river, which the indigenous Lenca people consider sacred. She was shot in her bed for leading this campaign in defence of the environment and human rights.
Her daughter Bertita Zúñiga Cáceres is now continuing the struggle of her mother. She is visiting Ireland this week to speak about her indigenous community’s struggle to defend their land from corporate power, and their campaign to bring the masterminds behind her mother’s murder to justice.
“I believe that we deserve a life of justice, freedom and peace” says Bertita. “We want a country that recognises indigenous peoples and the diversities that make up Honduras – a country built according to Honduran needs and not those of companies.”
“Trócaire supporters in Ireland have helped us by giving visibility to the fight for justice, as well as financial support. This will help to keep the work going in the search for justice and in defence of all human-rights defenders and indigenous communities”.
Bertita will be speaking at the launch of Trócaire’s new report ‘Women Taking the Lead: Defending Human Rights and the Environment’. This new report details the experiences of courageous women across the world, like Bertita, who are engaged in defending their communities, challenging corporate greed and protecting the environment.
The report highlights how across the world, attacks on female human rights defenders are increasing. Last year 137 women were attacked for opposing big business and defending their communities. Almost half of all of these attacks were against indigenous women and affected rural communities. Disasters resulting from climate change are estimated to kill 14 times more females than males.
Trócaire is focusing our 2020 Lent Campaign on the experiences of women in the face of these global threats, and how you can support these courageous women to protect their families and communities in the face of climate change and corporate abuses.
“This year, Trócaire’s Lent campaign will help to support women around the world who are struggling to protect their families from intimidation, violence, hunger and drought” said Trócaire CEO Caoimhe de Barra.
“By contributing to our Lenten Appeal, people in Ireland will be providing vital aid, care and support to these brave women.”
Please support our Lent campaign this year to provide vital support to these brave women and their communities.