TEGUCIGALPA – A cameraman was injured on Tuesday when he was struck in the head by a stone while Honduran security forces were breaking up a university protest.
Arturo Hernandez, a cameraman for the daily La Tribuna, published in Tegucigalpa, told reporters that during the protest he was hit in the head with a hurled stone.
Students staged the protest at the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) to demand the resignation of the institution’s dean, Julieta Castellanos.
The demonstrators, most of whom had covered their faces, began their protest – called the “Day of the Hoods” – by using stones to block a street passing in front of UNAH, spurring the deployment of security forces to dislodge them.
The students responded by hurling stones at the police, who in turn retaliated with tear gas and a water cannon mounted on an armored anti-riot vehicle.
The students, who a few hours earlier had blocked access to the university facilities, are also demanding the cancellation of legal measures against about 20 of their number for allegedly taking over public property.
Castellanos said on Tuesday that she will not resign “just because the idea occurs to someone” and asked those who are demanding her exit to present “their case.”
She emphasized that UNAH students on the capital campus will not lose their second semester, which is scheduled to end in the first week of August, but the third one – beginning in September – is at risk due to the ongoing protest.
The crisis at UNAH over the students’ demand that Castellanos resign is affecting thousands of students and some of them have had their second semesters cancelled.
University authorities have called for UNAH buildings that have been occupied by protesting students to be cleared so that it will not continue to affect the year’s second academic period, which was cancelled two weeks ago at the UNAH campus in the southern Honduran city of Choluteca.