The people of Honduras have unitedly defeated the conservative and neoliberal forces backed by the United States and elected the first female president Xiomara Castro of the left-wing Liberty and Refoundation (Libre) Party. According to reports, Castro of the Libre Party has obtained over 53% of the votes, and is leading the presidential race by a 20% margin.
Castro’s victory is a big blow to the US imperialist project in Latin America. Her husband Manuel Zelaya was ousted in the US-backed coup d’état in 2009. On June 28, 2009, Honduran Special Forces detained President Manuel Zelaya from his residence at gunpoint and sent him to exile in Costa Rica. The coup allowed the Honduran right wing to re-entrench itself in the country and they remained in power using fraudulent elections.
The last electoral process, in 2017, was marked by widespread irregularities leading to protests across the country demanding a re-election. The government of Juan Orlando Hernández (JOH), belonging to right-wing National Party of Honduras imposed a curfew and launched violent repression against protesters. More than 30 people were killed during the police violence. Despite the protests, JO was declared the winner and managed to secure a second term.
Libre Party was founded in 2011 by the National Popular Resistance Front (FNRP), a left wing coalition of organizations that opposed the 2009 coup.
The victory of Castro and Libre Party comes at a point when Honduras has been facing decade-long rampant neoliberal policies that has plunged the country into a “neoliberal hell.” The Latin American country had been witnessing skyrocketing prices and inflation and widespread impunity for murders, rapes, and other abuses committed by Honduran security forces – “and all with the help of increased US military and police aid”.