Skip to: Content
Skip to: Site Navigation
Skip to: Search


Latin America Blog

Honduras calls in the police - from Chile

Lauded as among the best police institutions in Latin America, Chile's Los Carabineros are helping Honduras, one of the most troubled countries in the region right now.

(Page 2 of 2)



A more recent report by the Vanderbilt team, "The Political Culture of Democracy in Chile, 2010″ (in Spanish), states that, at the time of the study, los Carabineros were one of the most trusted institutions in Chile.

Skip to next paragraph

Recent posts

In contrast, Elyssa Pachico reports for InSight Crime on popular perception of police corruption in Honduras. "According to one poll by the Central American University, over two-thirds of Hondurans believe the police are corrupt, and 77 percent percent blame President Porfirio Lobo for the current crisis," Pachico writes.

It’s worth noting that los Carabineros de Chile have been criticized recently for several incidents of police brutality related to the various popular protests. They have lost a measure of public trust and respect for their use of force in shutting down protesters – including the death of a protester in August 2011.

While police brutality (defined here as undue or unprovoked violence toward citizens) is never justifiable, it’s important to keep things in perspective. Edward Fox explains the unique dynamics that define the Honduran challenge.

"In both Brazil and Honduras, the police are deeply embedded in the very criminal structures they are tasked with dismantling," Mr. Fox writes. "But while Brazil has taken on a hugely ambitious (and to some degree, successful) project at police reform, Honduras is smaller, poorer, more politically troubled, and far more important as a transit country for the shipment of cocaine. All this will make police reform in Honduras a far more difficult task."

The specific areas in which los Carabineros de Chile will be advising President Lobo include drug trafficking, organized crime, extortion, killings, kidnappings, and car theft. Despite the previously mentioned critiques, los Carabineros de Chile are a good choice to help Honduras in these areas.

Because at this point, police handling of popular protests would probably be the least of Honduras’ worries.

--- Jackie Briski is a Latin Americanist and author of the blog cuando asi no sea.

Get daily or weekly updates from CSMonitor.com delivered to your inbox. Sign up today.

The Christian Science Monitor has assembled a diverse group of Latin America bloggers. Our guest bloggers are not employed or directed by the Monitor and the views expressed are the bloggers' own, as is responsibility for the content of their blogs. To contact us about a blogger, click here.

Permissions

Read Comments

View reader comments | Comment on this story

  • Weekly review of global news and ideas
  • Balanced, insightful and trustworthy
  • Subscribe in print or digital

Special Offer

 

Doing Good

 

What happens when ordinary people decide to pay it forward? Extraordinary change...

Danny Bent poses at the starting line of the Boston Marathon in Hopkinton, Mass.

After the Boston Marathon bombings, Danny Bent took on a cross-country challenge

The athlete-adventurer co-founded a relay run called One Run for Boston that started in Los Angeles and ended at the marathon finish line to raise funds for victims.

 
 
Become a fan! Follow us! Google+ YouTube See our feeds!