CDA Update on Coup in Honduras

Dear Friends:

We write today about the coup in Honduras.

On Sunday morning, Honduran soldiers stormed the presidential palace and forced the country’s democratically-elected President, Manuel Zelaya, into exile in Costa Rica.  Following his forced departure, the Honduran National Congress named congressional leader Roberto Micheletti as the new president. World leaders have condemned the military coup and voiced support for Zelaya as the only recognized President of Honduras.

Emergency meetings have been arranged by the Organization of American States, Central American Integration System, United Nations and the Bolivarian Alternative to the Americas (ALBA) to push for Zelaya’s return to the presidency.  Meanwhile, thousands of protesters demonstrating in the streets of Tegucigalpa for Zelaya’s return were met by soldiers with tear gas, water hoses, billy-clubs and gunshots.  The military has shut down local television and radio stations and cut signals for international news channels, such as CNN en Español and Telesur, in a media blackout that has drawn condemnation from international press freedom groups.

President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton and other officials have repeatedly called the coup “illegal” and said that Zeyala is the only President that the U.S. will recognize. We released the following statement about the unfortunate events in Honduras:

The Center for Democracy in the Americas deplores the coup against President Zelaya in Honduras, and supports efforts by the United States government, our allies in the region, and the OAS to restore the constitutional order in Honduras. The reaction by the U.S. government, its condemnation of the overthrow of the Zelaya presidency, and its continued firm stand in support of Mr. Zelaya as Honduras’ president, are welcome indications that U.S. foreign policy toward the Western Hemisphere is continuing to move in the right direction. It is very important to the U.S. national interest that we pursue this new course with consistency and that we remain firm in our commitment to democracy, the rule of law, and the protection of human rights in Honduras.

To make it easier to follow the unfolding events, we have set up a page on our website with relevant news articles, Administration statements and links to live reporting. You can access that page here: CDA Reacts, Provides Resources re: Coup in Honduras.

We will continue to follow developments and provide you with another update in a special section of this week’s Cuba Central NewsBlast.

– The Cuba Central Team

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