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Facilitating Conflict Resolution and Mitigating Human Rights Impacts in Indigenous Communities (Honduras)


Our client was engaged in oil and gas exploration off the Miskito Coast in Honduras, an area inhabited by the Miskito Indians and Garifuna. This region also happened to be a focal point in the US-led War on Drugs at the time. Facing complex challenges, our client sought our assistance in addressing several critical areas: (a) conducting a comprehensive security and human risk assessment; (b) mapping and analysing key conflicts and stakeholders; and (c) conducting a Human Rights Impact Assessment (HRIA). Additionally, there was a pressing need to address tensions and stalled dialogue with the Garifuna community.


To address the critical issue of the blocked dialogue with the Garifuna community, we introduced a dispute resolution advisory element to our scope. A dialogue strategy was devised, and our team guided discussions between the client and Garifuna elders. Additionally, we provided coaching and support to the client's focal point to advance these initial talks, spanning a two-week period. Preparations were made for a concluding set of talks in La Ceiba, in collaboration with the Garifuna elders, which were successfully facilitated.


The outcome of this component of the project was the unblocking of dialogue with the Garifuna community, leading to a mutually agreed resolution. This allowed our client to proceed with offshore exploration activities within agreed parameters, free from opposition or the risk of reputational damage.