Speech by President Xiomara Castro at the 78th General Assembly of the United Nations.
Today marks one year since my appearance before this assembly, serving as the first female president of the Republic of Honduras, which emerged from the resistance in the streets, fighting against the coup d’état, which overthrew Manuel Zelaya Rosales, elected democratic president. .
The progress and results of my government have already been recognized by the international community and financial organizations: greater economic growth, the rescue of public finances with the cancellation of corrupt trusts, a single cash fund, fiscal discipline, the timely payment of the onerous debt and the decrease in inflation and decrease in country risk.
Together with Congress, we cancel the Secrets Law, an instrument of corruption of the previous regime. We cancel the ZEDE Law that divided the territory into 17 pieces to hand it over to 25 economic groups.
In terms of security, we have already achieved a significant reduction in extortion, homicides and violence with the “solution against crime” program, and the intervention of penal centers and the state of emergency.
Likewise, it is important to highlight for the record, my gratuitous detractors, the increase ordered in the budget of the social sectors for poverty reduction, education and health: School snacks for all boys and girls in primary schools. Maybe we return to the historic program of free tuition, fuel subsidies and free energy for the poorest, and massive bonuses for agricultural production, repair of 12 thousand abandoned schools, productive roads in all the municipalities of Honduras, repair of the network road, and the construction process of eight new hospitals.
In 2022, I informed the international community that the previous president of Honduras was accused by the United States of conspiring and organizing the trafficking of thousands of tons of drugs for more than a decade, leading a criminal organization that included different low-profile figures. world, state authorities such as mayors, ministers, deputies, generals and police chiefs. Some already convicted.
These assailants who kidnapped the State today conspire against my government, organized in an alliance of corrupt politicians and supposed civil society, with the aim of stopping the proposals for structural changes that the people ordered me at the polls. They are the same people who murdered Morazán and today oppose the approval of the Tax Justice Law, boycott the election of the new attorney general to perpetuate the impunity to which they are accustomed and hinder the arrival of the international commission to combat corruption and impunity, CICIH.
It is impossible to understand the magnitude of the tragedy suffered by the majority of the Honduran people and the constant caravans of emigrants that arrive in the United States, if we deny the thirteen years of dictatorship supervised by the international community, which multiplied the public debt six times, and reached the highest poverty rate in the history of Honduras, 74%.
The Honduran people in their noble aspiration for justice have given me a forceful mandate; combat and dismantle the drug state and the public-private corruption that looted and destroyed the institutions, adulterated the popular will with electoral fraud and imposed state terrorism with death squads.
Popular support has been demonstrated with the recent mobilizations of popular resistance at the national level with hundreds of thousands of grateful men and women, who have expressed their support for our fight for the return to the rule of law and restore dignity to the Honduran people and to the presidency of the Republic.
This Monday, September 18, upon my arrival in New York, after my participation in the G77+China Summit in Havana, Cuba, fulfilling the commitment signed in my government plan and in accordance with the memorandum of understanding signed with the UN in 2022: I have delivered to the Secretary General of the United Nations, the official proposal for a Convention for the establishment of the International Commission Against Corruption and Impunity for Honduras, CICIH, impartial, autonomous and independent with the capacity to investigate and prosecute cases of high-impact corruption networks and financial crimes. The only way to purify a State where public institutions, pirates of the political class and public-private associations have been infiltrated by organized crime.
Next year I will assume the Pro-tempore Presidency of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Central American Integration System (SICA). This includes the entire Great Homeland, the one dreamed of by the liberators and those of us who fight for the unity of South America, the Caribbean, Central America and Mexico.
Today we have the responsibility to open spaces for dialogue between us, to formulate proposals that resolve the challenges facing our region. Not only are we one of the most unequal and poor regions, but we also have low economic growth and technological lag to face the threats to which we are subjected. Only by supporting each other will we be able to move forward. We must not forget our brothers and sisters in Haiti. The humanitarian crisis of an oppressed and revolutionary nation deserves our support and solidarity.
At the recent Third Summit of the European Union and CELAC, held last July, I clearly expressed Honduras’ points of view on international issues that, as I have stated here, require an urgent solution.
And as for SICA, Central America, it is timely to express the importance of promoting the integration process, which has had a languid development in the last 30 years, so we must express true political will that allows us to advance the union. customs, social and environmental policies and the safe transit of people and their goods.
Today, major economic interests confront each other in the war in Ukraine; in the end, those most affected are the poorest countries and people in the world, devastated by inflation, shortages and high fuel prices.
The military industrial complex consumes the majority of the budgets of developed countries with trillions and trillions of dollars, but it contrasts with the indifference and inability to contribute to humanity and the defense of nature. The world of Bretton Woods is hitting rock bottom, now we have to recognize that under the current pace we are not achieving the objectives of sustainable development and financing for climate adaptation. It is not about taking measures, but about proposing changes to the economic system that require a deep commitment to humanity and nature.
There is no such invisible hand, there is no spillover, practice teaches us that the application of global capitalism and the neoliberal model only generates misery and inequality and an insane individualism of consumer societies in the face of great deprivation of billions of human beings.
The war in Ukraine must come to an end, all of humanity is obliged to find a way to achieve peace, we cannot live with the permanent threat of a conflagration that puts an end to our planet.
It is important to end the practice of sanctions, piracy, and confiscation of assets of one nation against another. We cannot speak of a civilized world when we live exposed to being embargoed and having our reserves frozen in foreign banks, as is currently happening. to Venezuela, whose assets were confiscated, violating all the norms of international law.
This United Nations Assembly annually demands the end of the blockade against Cuba, for being an arbitrary, obsolete measure contrary to international law, which violates the principle of respect for the self-determination of peoples and condemns a noble people to sacrifice that Despite the limitations imposed on it, it continues to contribute solidarity actions to the world.
We condemn the long and cruel blockade against Cuba and Venezuela, likewise, we demand the removal of Cuba from the list of countries classified as terrorists, for being a manipulated, false and capricious measure, the unjust measures and sanctions against Nicaragua must also be eliminated , because they are barriers that prevent us from normalizing our relations with our sister country.
I believe in a multipolar world, where exchange and cooperation for development is based on the principles of independence, sovereignty and non-interference, based on these principles a couple of months ago I officially opened relations with the People’s Republic of China, as we do rapprochement with financial organizations and innovative initiatives, for us such as the Andean Development Corporation, CAF, of which we are already a member, and the New BRICS Development Bank.
I want to reiterate, just as I did at the CELAC European Union Summit, the vehement call for the freedom of Julián Assange, faithful defender of free expression, a sacred principle that we must all defend.
In defense of the native peoples who fight for the land and the rivers, I feel proud as a woman to convey the message of our companion and martyr Berta Cáceres.
“Wake up humanity, there is no more time.”
Thank you so much.