The country is preparing for the November 27 general elections. The good news is that no attacks on the media have been reported such as those seen in the primary elections for the traditional political parties, where one candidate had threatened the media’s right to report the news. The ban against publishing the results of surveys within three months prior to the elections remains in effect. This prohibition also extends to exit polls on the day of the election, based on the assumption that the media might influence voters. There are very positive developments to report. The “insult law” — which represented a constant threat of legal action against journalists based on the sole decision of any public official — has been repealed. However, lawsuits against media outlets over published news items are still commonplace. The Honduran Journalists Association (“colegio” in Spanish) has responded to these lawsuits and denounced an escalation of hostile acts against journalists, media outlets, and media owners by those bent on destroying freedom of expression in Honduras. In recent months a number of statements have been issued in favor of passing the Freedom of Information Act, which is pending in Congress. The main developments during this period are as follows: On May 19, the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court repealed the “insult law,” describing it as an obstacle to the free expression of thought and an undue privilege for public servants. The relevant provisions were contained in Article 345 of the Criminal Code, and provided for prison terms of two to four years for anyone who “threatens, defames, insults, or otherwise offends the dignity of a government figure in the course of exercising his or her duties, whether in deed or in word, spoken or written.” On July 8, a savings and loan institution known as La Constancia filed a lawsuit against journalists Eduardo Maldonado and Esdras Amado López. Maldonado is the director of the shows “Hable como habla” on Channel 11 and “Interpretando la noticia” of the Globo radio network, while López is the director of the show “Así se informa” on Channel 36, which he also co-owns. La Constancia is represented in the case by businessman Jhonny Kafati, who is a special adviser to the government on housing issues. Maldonado and López reported on a financial transaction between La Constancia and a pension and retirement institution. This news item was broadcast repeatedly on May 9, 11, 12, 17 and 23. The settlement hearing did not yield the expected outcome. On July 27 businessman Jorge Canahuati Larach, chairman of the newspapers La Prensa and El Heraldo, was sued by Jaime Rosenthal Oliva, chairman of Diario Tiempo. La Prensa ran articles July 23–25 on a land dispute in western Honduras between some local residents and Banco Continental, which is owned by Rosenthal Oliva. One of the local residents received a gunshot wound. Two settlement hearings have been unsuccessful. On July 28 a trial court dismissed the libel suit against La Prensa and Chairman Jorge Canahuati Larach. La Prensa had run a series of articles on the use of an aquifer by the company Embotelladora de Honduras S.A. (Embohsa). This aquifer supplies water to one-third of the population of San Pedro Sula. Presiding over the court were judges Ramón Enrique Barrios, Ricardo Pérez and Alba Leticia Bueso. A lawsuit remains pending against journalist Arnulfo Aguilar. He was sued by former judge Thelma de Zerón over articles he had written while working for La Prensa. Aguilar is now the director of Radio Uno. Also pending is a lawsuit against journalist Serapio Umanzor for articles he had written for La Prensa involving a member of Congress. The government continues to require mandatory membership in the official journalists’ association, or colegio, in order to engage in newsgathering activities