The award was created in honor of Herbert Anaya Sanabria, who was murdered by unidentified gunmen on October 26, 1987, when he was president of the nongovernmental Human Rights Commission of El Salvador (CDHES). Gloria Anaya, the oldest daughter of the slain human rights activist for whom the award is named, said that the award ceremony took place during the closing of the 7th International Congress on Human Rights at the University of El Salvador, held October 25th and 26th. The slogan of the meeting was “Historical Memory, Truth and Restorative Justice: Demands of the New Generations.”
Human rights activist and general coordinator of the Committee of Relatives of Missing Detainees in Honduras, Berta Oliva, claimed at the meeting that paramilitary groups like CAM (Commando Álvarez Martínez) are behind the murders of Honduran opposition activists, and that ten teachers have been their victims. “Human rights violations and selective persecution assassinations are everyday occurrences,” she said, showing that “the military coup continues.” Ms. Oliva also stated that fifty-six human rights activists have been threatened by different armed groups. She asked that the Organization of American States urge the United States not to support the Honduran military while human rights violations continue.
Additionally, a few Honduran rural leaders attended the human rights meeting, saying that a campaign of persecution was being carried out against them to deprive them of their rights to land. Matías Valle Cárdenas, Vice Presidnet of the United Campesino Movement of Aguán, said that 16 of his comrades had been murdered in the last six months.
The National Popular Resistance Front of Honduras was created in Honduras on June 28, 2009, a few hours after the ouster of former president Manuel Zelaya.