The Government of Honduras militarizes prisons and dismisses the Minister of Security after the death of 46 women in a prison

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The President of Honduras, Xiomara Castromoved tab after the murder this Tuesday of 46 women prisoners in the National Women’s Penitentiary for Social Adaptation (PNFAS) who died burned and shot at the hands of gang members from Barrio 18. After announcing “drastic” measures, the first thing he did was dismiss the Minister of Security, Ramón Sabillón, and replace him with the director of the National Police, Gustavo Sánchez. In addition, dismissed from their posts all the members of the current Board of Inspectorate of Penal Centersincluding its director, Julissa Villanueva, who returns to her position as Undersecretary of State in the Office of Police Affairs.

The Honduran government announced that, as of July 1, the Public Order Military Police (PMOP) will assume the coordination, direction and control of the 21 prisons in the country, for a period of one year. During this time, the military must recruit, train and educate at least 2,000 new prison guards.

Another of the advanced measures on Wednesday night was the extension of the State of Exception to other areas and zones of the national territory, while its validity will also be extended in time, after it began to be applied on December 6, 2022 and has been extended three times. Currently, it affects 123 of the 298 municipalities of the Central American country and ended on July 5. The objective is reduce high crime ratesalthough so far this year there have been 12 massacres, the most recent being the one that occurred in a hotel in the city of Comayagüela where seven people died in March of this year, at the hands of alleged members of the Barrio 18.

On the other hand, the Castro Executive has ordered the armed forces to enable the Isla del Cisne, located in the Caribbean Sea 250 kilometers from the mainland, as a penal farm for the transfer of the leaders of criminal organizations, considered highly dangerous. , who are detained in prisons or who are identified, captured and prosecuted.

Also, from now on, the Honduran armed forces will assume security functions, in collaboration with the National Police, in the 18 departments of the country in the areas and actions that are thus specified. The Honduran government has also requested the judiciary to grant alternative preventive detention measures to all women who are in the PNFAS who are not sentenced and to those who suffer from terminal illnesses, so that only those who are considered high danger.

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