Monday, June 29, 2009
The democratically-elected President of Honduras, Jose Manuel Zelaya, was ousted from the Presidential palace yesterday in a military coup orchestrated by Honduran General Romeo Vasquez. (General Vasquez is a graduate of the infamous "School of the Americas.") The military stormed the Presidential Palace Sunday morning at 5 a.m. The military forced President Zelaya onto a plane that flew to Costa Rica, where he is now. Later on Sunday, the right-wing Honduran Congress voted the head of Congress, Roberto Michelleti, as the new President.
U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon issued a statement about the coup. Here is an excerpt from the U.N. press release:
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has expressed his deep concern over the reported coup in Honduras, voicing his strong support for the nation’s democratic institutions and speaking out against the arrest of its constitutional President.
According to media reports, President José Manuel Zelaya Rosales was overthrown yesterday, when a referendum was slated to be held on changing the Honduran constitution.
Mr. Ban “urges the reinstatement of the democratically elected representatives of the country and full respect for human rights, including safeguards for the security of President Zelaya, members of his family and his government,” according to a statement issued yesterday by his spokesperson. He also urged all Hondurans to resolve their difference peacefully and “in the spirit of reconciliation.”
The statement noted that the Secretary-General welcomes the prompt diplomatic efforts undertaken by the Organization of American States (OAS), whose Permanent Council has held a special meeting on the matter.
We also have for you this link to the U.S. State Department Background Briefing on the situation in Honduras. That link gives some insight into negotiations now taking place for an OAS resolution.