Emergency plan against crime: Honduras will build a “megaprison”

Emergency plan against crime: Honduras will build a “megaprison”
Emergency plan against crime: Honduras will build a “megaprison”

The President of Honduras, Xiomara Castro, announced on Friday the construction of a “megaprison” that could accommodate 20,000 detainees, as part of an emergency plan against crime in this Central American country racked by violence.

The leader and members of the National Defense and Security Council unveiled, during a national address on radio and television, a “solution plan against crime”, in response to the demands of the population in the face of the rise violence.

“Under this declared security emergency, we have ordered the immediate construction of an Emergency Reclusion Center (CRE) with a capacity of 20,000 detainees in the depopulated area between the departments of Olancho and Gracias a Dios [est]», announced the head of the armed forces, Roosevelt Hernandez.

Prisoners currently held in the national prison system will be transferred there “immediately”, he added. Around thirty prisons house some 21,000 inmates in the country.

The Minister of Defense, Manuel Zelaya, also announced the launch, at the latest in two weeks, of the call for tenders for the construction of another prison, already planned to accommodate 2,000 detainees, on the islands of Swan in the Caribbean.

The armed forces and the police “must immediately plan and implement urgent interventions in all municipalities in the country identified as having a high incidence of crimes such as assassinations, drug trafficking, extortion, kidnappings, arms trafficking , illicit associations and money laundering,” the president also declared.

The plan aims to “establish control and restore order in physical spaces occupied by criminal structures in neighborhoods and areas with high crime rates,” explained Security Minister Gustavo Sanchez.

It also plans to “intensify investigations and operations to locate, eradicate, secure and destroy coca leaf plantations, marijuana plantations and drug processing centers,” he said.

The construction of this “megaprison” and the dozen other measures in the emergency plan are inspired by those taken by the president of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, who succeeded in controlling the “cancer” of gangs in this neighboring country. Honduras and had invited his Honduran counterpart when he took office for a second term on June 1.

Honduras is one of the most violent countries in the world, with a homicide rate of 34 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2023, almost six times the global average.

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