President Barack Obama's deputy national security adviser said he spoke with Honduran President Porfirio Lobo Wednesday about how the fight against violent crime "cannot be conducted at the expense of human rights."
The United States is withholding $50 million due to concerns by some members of Congress about ongoing military and police corruption, assassinations of journalists and lawyers and a dysfunctional criminal justice system. The withheld amount equals about half of all U.S. aid to Honduras.
The U.S. did resume sharing of radar intelligence with Honduras last week after a four-month stand-down prompted by repeated shootdowns of civilian aircraft suspected of drug trafficking.
After the meetings in the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa, adviser Denis McDonough said he discussed ongoing collaboration with Lobo and called for "tangible progress" in protecting human rights.