The Americas program sponsored by Nonviolence International (NI-Americas) is spearheaded by Andres Thomas Conteris, who has served as the Director of the Program on the Americas since 1999.
NI-Americas supports the No Foreign Military Bases Network. This network of organizations aims to stop the proliferation of foreign military bases in Latin America and the Caribbean. NI-Americas’ director, Andres Conteris, helped organize protests against the United States’ occupation of Vieques Island in Puerto Rico, which succeeded in expelling the U.S. navy in 2003. This included a famous 40-day fast in front of the White House. Andres has also served on the International Board for the Campaign to End Foreign Military Bases.
In 2005, the Americas program began translating and recording headline news for Democracy Now in Spanish. It enrolls more than 500 Spanish language radio stations throughout the world to broadcast these headlines daily. Six years later, this program continues to support this important project.
In 2009, Andres assisted in leading international solidarity efforts to oppose the coup d’état in Honduras. He was the only American who stayed in the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa with President Zelaya for more than four months. He has led numerous delegations to Honduras and Latin America focusing on topics such as human rights and justice.
The NI Program on the Americas has worked to get the “Training Manual for Nonviolent Defense Against the Coup d’ État” translated into Spanish and is currently in the process of printing 500 copies to be distributed throughout Latin America. 180 copies will be distributed in Honduras where the most recent coup took place in the Americas. The SERPAJ network is active in 13 countries in Latin America: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay and each of the national networks will distribute 5 copies each. The Manual will also be distributed at events sponsored by the World Social Forum.