- Military of Honduras
Armed Forces of Honduras
Fuerzas Armadas de Honduras
Founded 1825 Service branches Honduran Army
Leadership Commander-in-Chief Porfirio Lobo Sosa General René Arnoldo Osorio Canales Manpower Military age 18 for voluntary 2-3 year service Available for
1,868,940 males, age 16-49,
1,825,770 (2008 est.) females, age 16-49
1,397,938 males, age 16-49,
1,402,398 (2009 est.) females, age 16-49
88,993 (2009 est.) females
Active personnel 20,000 Expenditures Budget $100,600,000 Percent of GDP 0.6%
- 1 History
- 2 Military-civilian relations and leadership
- 3 Equipment
- 4 Air Force
- 5 Navy
- 6 See also
- 7 References
- 8 External links
During the twentieth century, Honduran military leaders frequently became presidents, either through elections or by coups d'état. General Tiburcio Carías Andino was elected in 1932, he later on called a constituent assembly that allowed him to be reelected, and his rule became more authoritarian until an election in 1948. During the following decades, the military of Honduras carried out several coups d'état, starting in October 1955. General Oswaldo López Arellano carried out the next coup in October 1963 and a second in December 1972, followed by coups in 1975 by Juan Alberto Melgar Castro and in 1978 by Policarpo Paz García.
Events during the 1980s in El Salvador and Nicaragua led Honduras — with US assistance — to expand its armed forces considerably, laying particular emphasis on its air force, which came to include a squadron of US-provided F-5s.
The military unit Battalion 316 carried out political assassinations and torture of suspected political opponents of the government during this same period. Battalion members received training and support from the United States Central Intelligence Agency both in Honduras and at U.S. military bases and in Chile during the presidency of the dictator Augusto Pinochet. Amnesty International estimated that at least 184 people were "disappeared" during from 1980 to 1992 in Honduras, most likely by the Honduran military.
The resolution of the civil wars in El Salvador and Nicaragua and across-the-board budget cuts made in all ministries has brought reduced funding for the Honduran armed forces. The abolition of the draft has created staffing gaps in the now all-volunteer armed forces. The military now is far below its authorized strength, and further reductions are expected. In January 1999, the Constitution was amended to abolish the position of military commander-in-chief of the armed forces, thus codifying civilian authority over the military.
Since 2002 soldiers have been involved in crime prevention and law enforcement, patrolling the streets of the major cities alongside the national police.
On 28 June 2009, in the context of a constitutional crisis, the military, acting on orders of the Supreme Court of Justice, arrested the president, Manuel Zelaya after which they forcibly removed elected President Zelaya from Honduras. See the article 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis regarding claims regarding legitimacy and illegitimacy of the event, and events preceding and following the removal of Zelaya from Honduras.
The military's chief lawyer, Colonel Herberth Bayardo Inestroza Membreño, made public statements regarding the removal of Zelaya. On June 30, he showed a detention order, apparently signed June 26 by a Supreme Court judge, which ordered the armed forces to detain the president. Colonel Inestroza later stated that deporting Zelaya did not comply with the court order: "In the moment that we took him out of the country, in the way that he was taken out, there is a crime. Because of the circumstances of the moment this crime occurred, there is going to be a justification and cause for acquittal that will protect us." He said the decision was taken by the military leadership "in order to avoid bloodshed".
Human rights violations during 2009
Following the 2009 ouster of the president, the Honduran military together with other government security forces were allegedly responsible for thousands of allegedly arbitrary detentions and for several forced disappearances and extrajudicial executions of opponents to the de facto government, including members of the Democratic Unification Party.
Military-civilian relations and leadership
According to a statement in July 2009 by a legal counsel of the Honduras military, Colonel Herberth Bayardo Inestroza, the Honduran military was opposed to President Manuel Zelaya, whom the military had removed from Honduras a few days earlier, because of his left-wing politics. Inestroza stated, "It would be difficult for us [the military], with our training, to have a relationship with a leftist government. That's impossible."
The current head of the armed forces is Carlos Antonio Cuéllar, graduate of the General Francisco Morazan Military Academy and the School of the Americas. In January 2011 the General Rene Arnoldo Osorio Canales former head of the Presidential Honor Guard, was appointed Commander.
Sub Machine Guns
- M1 garand
- M1 carbine
- M14 rifle
- FN FAL
- IMI Galil
- M16 rifle
- M4 Carbine
- Beretta AR70/90
- IMI TAR-21 Tavor
Light Machine Guns
- 60mm mortars
- 400x 81mm M1\M-29 mortar
Vehicles and Artillery
Armoured Fighting Vechiles Model Type Number Dates Manufacturer Details Scorpion Light tank 12 Alvis Cars, United Kingdom FV-101\76 76mm main gun. Scimitar Armoured Recce tank 3 Alvis Cars, United Kingdom FV-107 30mm main gun. Sultan Command Vehicle 1 Alvis Cars, United Kingdom FV-105 AM General Humvee M998 APC 4x4 30 United States 4x4. some with M40 106mm RCL. RBY MK 1 Wheeled Reconnaissance Vehicle 16 IAI (RAMTA division), Israel 4x4. some with M40 106mm RCLs. Saladin Armoured Car 72 Alvis Cars, United Kingdom\ West Germany FV-601. 6x6 76mm main gun. Utility Vehicles Model Type Number Dates Manufacturer Details M151 MUTT Light Utility Vehicle Various, United States M35 Medium Cargo Truck Various, United States Stallion 4x4 Truck 110 2009- Ashok Leyland, India Ordered in January, 2009. Part of an order for 139 miscellaneous utility and transport vehicles. Topchi 4x4 Truck 28 2009- Ashok Leyland, India Ordered in January, 2009. Part of an order for 139 miscellaneous utility and transport vehicles. Artillery Model Type Number Dates Manufacturer Details M102 Towed 105mm Howitzer 24 United States M101 Towed 105mm Howitzer 20 United States M198 Towed 155mm Howitzer 4-12 United States| M-66 160mm Mortar 30 Soltam Israel M-65 120mm Mortar 30 Soltam Israel Brandt M0-120LT 120mm Mortar 60 Brandt France\ Argentina M55A2 20mm AA-Gun 80 Yugoslavia| 34 in service, most in storage. M167 VADS Vulcan 20mm AA-Chain gun 30 United States TCM-20 20mm AA-Gun 24 Israel\ Swiss
The FAH operates from 4 air bases located at:
- Hernan Acosta Mejia Air Base at Tegucigalpa
- Soto Cano Air Base at Comayagua,
- Armando Escalon Espinal Air Base at San Pedro Sula
- Hector Caraccioli Moncada at La Ceiba.
With the exception of Soto Cano Air Base, all other air bases operate as dual civil and military aviation facilities.
Additionally, 3 air stations located at:
- Alto Aguán (bomb range)
- Puerto Lempira airstrips serve as forward operations locations-FOL.
Also a radar station operates at:
- La Mole peak.
The navy is a small force dealing with coastal and riverine security.
The navy has 31 patrol boats and landing craft.
Class Origin Type Versions In service Fleet Guaymuras class (105 foot Swift type) United States patrol boat 3 FNH 101 Guaymuras
FNH 102 Honduras W/O
FNH 103 Hibueras W/O
Yojoa (Hollyhock class) United States coastal buoy tender 1 FNH 252 Yojoa - ex-US Coast Guard Walnut W/O Broke in half during Huricane Mitch Punta Caxinas (149 foot Lantana type) United States coastal transport 1 FNH-1491 Choluteca Class (65 foot Swift type) United States coastal patrol craft 5 FNH 651 Nacaome
FNH 652 Goascoran
FNH 653 Petula
FNH 654 Ulua
FNH 655 Choluteca
Piraña class Napco United States riverine ops boat 8 Boston Whaler Guardián Class United States riverine ops boat 10 Tegucigalpa Class (106 foot Lantana type) United States patrol boat 3 FNH 1061-1062 Chamelecán Class (85 foot Dabur type) Israel patrol boat 1 FNH-8501 WARUNTA Class (75 foot LCM-8) United States landing craft 3 FNH 741-743 United States LCU 1 United States small river patrol boat 15
The Honduran navy has 4 naval bases:
- Base Naval Puerto Cortés - main repair and logistics base on the Caribbean Sea
- Base Naval Puerto Castilla - main operating base of patrol boats on the Caribbean Sea
- Base Naval Amapala- main operating base of coastal patrol craft on the north end of the island and only base on the Pacific Ocean side of Honduras
- Base Naval Caratasca - new base to deal with drug trafficking
Additionally, the Honduran navy has the following unit and schools:
- 1st. Marine lnfanty Battalion - only marine unit loocated at La Ceiba
- Honduras Naval Academy - Trains officers for the Honduras Navy at La Ceiba
- Naval Training Center - NCO and Sailor training facility
- CIA World Factbook
- West-Wind (Honduran Presidential Plane)
- ^ a b "CIA World Factbook". https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ho.html.
- ^ a b "NationMaster.com". http://www.nationmaster.com/country/ho-honduras/mil-military.
- ^ Cohn, Gary; Ginger Thompson (1995-06-11). "When a wave of torture and murder staggered a small U.S. ally, truth was a casualty". Baltimore Sun. Archived from the original on 2009-07-26. http://www.webcitation.org/5iZNHFhbk. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- ^ Equipo Nizkor, LA APARICION DE OSAMENTAS EN UNA ANTIGUA BASE MILITAR DE LA CIA EN HONDURAS REABRE LA PARTICIPACION ARGENTINO-NORTEAMERICANA EN ESE PAIS., Margen (Spanish)
- ^ "Honduras: Still waiting for justice". Amnesty International. 1998. http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR37/004/1998/en/667ec8d1-daba-11dd-80bc-797022e51902/amr370041998en.html. Retrieved 2009-07-27.
- ^ Lacy, Marc (July 1, 2009). "Leader’s Ouster Not a Coup, Says the Honduran Military". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/02/world/americas/02coup.html. Retrieved July 3, 2009.
- ^ a b English summary of interview with the legal counsel of the Honduras armed forces, Colonel Herberth Bayardo Inestroza, Robles, Frances (2009-07-03). "Top Honduran military lawyer: We broke the law". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 2009-09-06. http://www.miamiherald.com/1506/story/1125872.html. Retrieved 2009-09-06. ; original (Spanish) Dada, Carlos; José Luis Sanz (2009-07-02). "Cometimos un delito al sacar a Zelaya, pero había que hacerlo (". El Faro.net, El Salvador. Archived from the original on 2009-09-06. http://www.elfaro.net/secciones/Noticias/20090629/noticias16_20090629.asp. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
- ^ "Ejército de Honduras reconoció que cometió un delito al sacar a Zelaya" (in Spanish). www.cooperativa.cl (Compañía Chilena de Comunicaciones S.A.). http://www.cooperativa.cl/prontus_nots/site/artic/20090703/pags/20090703161258.html. Retrieved 2009-07-05.
- ^ "Preliminary Observations on the IACHR Visit to Honduras". Inter-American Court of Human Rights. 2009-08-21. Archived from the original on 2009-08-25. http://www.cidh.oas.org/Comunicados/English/2009/60-09eng.Preliminary.Observations.htm. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
- ^ "Informe Preliminar Violaciones A Derechos Humanos En El Marco Del Golpe De Estado En Honduras". Comité de Familiares de Detenidos Desaparecidos en Honduras. 2009-07-15. Archived from the original on 2009-07-29. http://www.cofadeh.org/html/documentos/informe_violaciones_ddhh_golpe_estado.doc. Retrieved 2009-07-30.
- ^ "International Observation Mission for the Human Rights Situation in Honduras Preliminary Report - Confirmed systematic human rights violations in Honduras since the coup d'etat". Upside Down World. 2009-08-06. Archived from the original on 2009-08-08. http://upsidedownworld.org/main/content/view/2040/68/. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- ^ (Spanish)Pérez, Luis Guillermo; (many) (2009-08-06). "Gobierno de facto viola derechos humanos". Agencia Latinoamerica de Información. Archived from the original on 2009-08-25. http://alainet.org/active/32206. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
- ^ "International Mission denounces the brutal repression of pacific demonstrations". Agencia Latinoamerica de Información. 2009-07-30. Archived from the original on 2009-08-02. http://www.alainet.org/active/32099. Retrieved 2009-08-02.
- ^ Quixote Center Emergency Delegation of Solidarity, Accompaniment and Witness (2009-08-07). "Letter to Honduran Attorney General Rubi". Quixote Center. Archived from the original on 2009-08-08. http://quixote.org/node/934. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- ^ Human Rights Watch (2009-08-25). "Honduras: Rights Report Shows Need for Increased International Pressure". Human Rights Watch. Archived from the original on 2009-08-28. http://www.hrw.org/en/news/2009/08/25/honduras-rights-report-shows-need-increased-international-pressure. Retrieved 2009-08-28.
- ^ a b c "country-data.com > Honduras > Appendix". http://www.country-data.com/frd/cs/honduras/hn_appen.html#table8.
- ^ a b Jane's World Armies 2008. Jane's Information Group. p. 318.
- ^ Jane's Infantry Weapons 2007-08. Jane's Information Group. p. 876.
- ^ a b c "AUS$ 10.5 million order for Ashok Leyland from Honduras". Machinist.in. 16 January 2009. http://machinist.in/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1877&Itemid=2. Retrieved 5 July 2009.
- ^ "Academia Militar de Aviación". http://www.academiamilfah.com.
- ^ CDR John T. Nawrocki, USN (PDF). Charting A Course For The Future: The Honduran Naval Forces. Defense Institute of Security Assistance Management. http://www.disam.dsca.mil/pubs/Indexes/Vol%2018_4/Nawrocki.pdf.
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