TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras – The office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights has condemned the killing of three indigenous men by a Honduran military patrol in the remote eastern Gracias a Dios province.
The three victims were in a boat on the Warunta river before dawn Saturday when the soldiers fired on them.
Human rights groups said the soldiers used unnecessary force against the men. Activists say the men were transporting wood in their boat and didn't obey the patrol's command to stop because they feared the soldiers were drug traffickers. The area is a transit point for Colombian cocaine.
The military called the incident "confusing" in a statement, but said the victims attacked first.
Local residents later partially burned a military outpost and the soldiers had to be evacuated by helicopter.