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28 May 2021


Honduras: US Govt. withdraws funding to the Jilamito hydroelectric project after “an extended due diligence period”; two opponents of the project have been killed

“Biden Just Killed Funding for a Controversial Dam Trump Tried to Build in Honduras”, 27 May 2021

...The U.S. government withdrew financial support this week from a proposed dam in Honduras that is at the center of a simmering conflict between local residents and developers. Two opponents of the project have been killed. The decision by the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, (DFC), which provides funding for private-sector projects, marked a victory for the activist groups in Honduras and the United States that had urged the agency to drop the project. In a recent letter to U.S. officials, they drew parallels to the 2016 murder of Berta Cáceres, a prominent activist who led opposition to a similar dam project in Honduras. The DFC, which had pledged loans of $35.7 million towards the Jilamito Hydroelectric Project, a 14.8 MW dam in northeastern Honduras, gave no reason for its decision, except to note that it was taken after “an extended due diligence period.” But the reversal of the approval given by the Trump Administration comes as the Biden Administration is reviewing policies towards Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador to try and reduce the poverty, corruption and violence that drive tens of thousands of people to try and reach the United States every month...The remaining investment comes from a Honduran company, Ingelsa, which initiated the project some 15 years ago. In the past few years, opposition has grown as the local community was joined by a national group, the Broad Movement for Dignity and Justice, known by its Spanish initials as MADJ...Ingelsa...said that its plans will proceed. The company said this week that it “was building the Jilamito project” and pointed to what it said was a record of “making positive changes in rural communities”...