On November 12, 2022, student protesters at the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) interrupted a meeting of the university council, injuring a university employee, expelling the university’s rector, and reportedly causing damage to university facilities.
The students had gathered to protest the election of the University Management Board, and to publicly register their disagreement with the leadership of the university’s rector, Francisco Herrera. The students reportedly engaged in violent or destructive behavior in the course of the protest, injuring one university employee and forcing Herrera out of the building.
Scholars at Risk is concerned about violent actions during the course of a student protest. While students have the right to gather publicly and engage in protest activity, those rights must be exercised responsibly, and in a nonviolent manner. In addition to the harm to individuals and facilities, violent or destructive activities in the course of a protest erodes academic freedom and democratic society generally.