Tim Kaine talks economic development, human rights with Honduras president

tim kaineToday, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services Committees, met with President Juan Orlando Hernández of Honduras to discuss economic and human rights conditions in the country and the fight against government corruption. Photos of today’s meeting are available here.

“It was great to sit down with President Hernández to discuss the issues mutually important to our nations,”Kaine said. “I appreciate the efforts of the Honduran government to improve its economic climate, hold accountable those responsible for human rights abuses, and work to weed out corruption and promote the rule of law. We talked in particular about the recent murder of environmental activist Berta Cáceres and the ongoing effort to bring the perpetrators of this horrible crime to justice. I believe in the tremendous potential of our hemisphere and our shared future and security. As our partners across Central America do their part – especially Honduras, a country for which I have deep personal ties and respect – the U.S. will stand with them to build a peaceful and prosperous neighborhood and region, which is an investment that will benefit all our people.”

President Hernandez emphasized his focus on the execution of the Plan of the Alliance for Prosperity of the Northern Triangle, an initiative between Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala to boost internal security and create economic incentives for people to remain in their own countries and decrease irregular migration to the United States. He noted this includes improving public safety and access to justice, strengthening democratic institutions, and promoting budget transparency and tax collection. President Hernandez also highlighted his government’s efforts to address human rights issues in Honduras and provided updates on the investigation into the recent murders of two prominent environmental activists.

Kaine highlighted the focus on public, private sector, and civil society collaboration as vital to achieving sustainable development and long-term growth.  He discussed implementation of the $750 million in FY 2016 funding that Congress appropriated for Central America and the importance of continuing robust, long-term investments in Northern Triangle countries.

Kaine recently co-sponsored the Secure the Northern Triangle Act to establish a coordinated regional response in the face of the endemic violence and humanitarian crisis driving women, children and families to flee their homes for the United Sates. Kaine last met with President Hernandez in January 2016 during his visit to Washington to sign an agreement with the Organization of American States to establish the Mission of Cooperation to Fight Corruption and Impunity in Honduras (MACCIH).

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