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Honduras: (Updated July 3) Solidarity and left movements condemn coup, demand elected president be returned to power

Solidarity protest in Sydney, Australia, July 1, 2009. Photos by Peter Boyle.

Below are just some of the statements released by solidarity groups, left parties and governments, and international organisations demanding the return to power of Honduras' elected presidet Manuel Zelaya. They have been compiled by Australia's Green Left Weekly.To view the complete list, click HERE.

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Statement by the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network (AVSN)

July 1, 2009 -- The Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network (AVSN) strongly condemns the undemocratic coup conducted by a small group of military, members of the oligarchy and their political agents in Honduras. The violent kidnapping and expulsion to Costa Rica of democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya is a ruthless attack on the rights of the Honduran people to freely elect their own leaders, and decide their own political future.

The pretext for the coup was no more than the president's plan for a non-binding national poll to determine support for a future referendum on the convening of a Constituent Assembly to recommend changes to the undemocratic Honduran constitution, which was imposed on the country during the US Reagan administration's puppet regime in Honduras in 1982. Now the congressman who organised the poll has reportedly been assassinated by the military.

The assault on the Venezuelan, Cuban and Nicaraguan ambassadors, who were trying to protect the foreign minister of Honduras from arrest by the military, is a further threat to the international Bolivarian movement for unity and social change throughout Latin America. AVSN declares that an attack on any progressive Latin American government -- especially a member of the Bolivarian Alliance for Latin America (ALBA), as Honduras is -- is a danger to all people's governments in the region.

This return to the era of military coups is a throwback to the dark past of Latin America of decades ago, and must be firmly rejected by all the peoples and governments of the world.

In particular, we call on the governments of the United States, Europe and Australia to resolutely condemn this coup, to refuse any recognition to the new, fraudulent regime in Honduras, and to cut off all military, economic and political ties with the Honduran junta.

We salute Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez when he warned of CIA involvement in the Honduran events, and when he called on US President Barrack Obama to "reject the coup right from the marrow". We also fully support the moves by the nine governments of ALBA to prepare a plan of action to combat the coup. We also note the vigorous condemnation of the Honduran coup by the Organization of American States.

Moreover, we call on the United Nations Security Council to convene an emergency meeting to condemn the coup and completely isolate the coup plotters internationally until President Zelaya is returned to his rightful presidential office, all Honduran military forces are sent back to their barracks and the coup plotters arrested and put on trial for their crimes.

We pledge the full solidarity of the AVSN and the Latin American solidarity movement in Australia until the coup is overturned and democratic rights reinstalled in Honduras.

ALBA declaration on Honduras coup d'etat

By the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA)

Proclamation of the Extraordinary Presidential Council

Managua, Republic of Nicaragua, June 29, 2009 -- On Sunday the 28th of June in early hours of the morning, when the Honduran people were getting ready to exercise their democratic will through a poll with a consultative character, promoted by the President of the Republic Manuel Zelaya Rosales to deepen participative democracy, a group of hooded soldiers, who affirmed they had received orders from the High Command of the Armed Forces, assaulted the residence of President Zelaya, in order to kidnap him, disappear him for a number of hours and later expel him violently from his homeland.

Immediately, the people of Honduras reacted like the noble heirs of the legacy of Francisco Morazán [1], in the streets of the cities and towns of Honduras. From the early hours of the morning hundreds of electoral booths received thousands of men and women who attended to exercise their right to vote, and on being informed of the kidnapping of their president, spilled out onto the streets to protest the coup d'etat, giving an example of heroism, to confront, unarmed, the guns and tanks.

Through the screens of Telesur, they managed to break the national and international silence that the dictatorship wanted to impose through closing the state television channel and cutting the electricity supply, aiming to conceal and justify the coup d'etat against their people and the international community - demonstrating an attitude that recalls the worst epoch of the dictatorships experienced in the 20th century in our continent.

With one single voice, the governments and peoples of the continent reacted condemning the coup d'etat, making clear that in Honduras there is only one President and one government: that of President Manuel Zelaya Rosales. At the same time, we salute the declarations of condemnation, that from very early, other governments of the world began to issue.

In the face of the urgency of the situation, the governments of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America immediately convoke an Extraordinary Presidential Council, with the objective of agreeing on forceful actions to defeat the coup d'etat in Honduras, to support the heroic people of Morazán and to unconditionally re-establish the President Manuel Zelaya Rosales in his legitimate duties.

After analyzing the circumstances which have produced this coup d'etat, in the face of the gravity of the violations of International Law, the multilateral agreements and the accords of our countries with the Republic of Honduras, and in view of the categorical rejection that the international community has manifested in front of the dictatorial government that is trying to impose itself, the member countries of ALBA have decided to withdraw our Ambassadors and leave a minimum expression of our diplomatic representation in Tegucigalpa until the legitimate government of President Manuel Zelaya Rosales is reinstated in its duties.

Likewise we recognise as the only diplomatic representatives of Honduras in our countries, the personnel designated by President Zelaya. Under no circumstances will we accredit personnel designated by the usurpers.

Equally, as full members of the various systems of integration of the continent, we insist that our brother countries of UNASUR, SICA, CARICOM, the Rio Group, the UN and the OAS proceed in the same way in the face of the assailants of the Honduran people.

On the other hand, we have agreed to declare ourselves in permanent alert in order to accompany the valiant people of Honduras in the actions of struggle that they have convoked, and we invoke the content of Articles 2 and 3 of the Political Constitution of the Republic of Honduras:

Art. 2: Sovereignty corresponds to the People from which emanate all the Powers of the State that are exercised through representation. The Sovereignty of the People can also be exercised in a direct manner through a Plebiscite or Referendum. The supplanting of popular Sovereignty and the usurpation of the constituted powers are classified as crimes of Treason against the Fatherland. The responsibility in these cases is imprescriptible and can be deduced to the role or petition of any citizen.

Art. 3: No one has to obey neither a usurper government nor those who assume functions or public employment through the force of arms or using measures or procedures that break or fail to recognise that which the Constitution and the laws establish. The acts verified by such authorities are invalid. The people have the right to resort to insurrection in defense of constitutional order.

As well as the principles of International Law respect the acts of resistance and rebellion of the people confronting the attempts at domination. To the teachers, workers, women, youth, peasants, indigenous peoples, honest business people, intellectuals and other actors of Honduran society, we assure that together we will win a great victory against the coup plotters that aim to impose themselves on the brave people of Francisco Morazán.

Invoking the spirit and though of Francisco Morazán, together with him, we proclaim to the coup plotters: Men, you who have abused the rights of the people for a sordid and stingy interest! With you I speak, enemies of independence and liberty. If our actions, aimed at acquiring a homeland, can suffer a parallel to those Central Americans that you have persecuted and exiled, I challenge you to present them. Those same people, who have been humiliated, insulted, debased and betrayed so many times, that today are the arbiters of their destiny and ask for our advice, those people will be your judge.

Those who are leading the coup d'etat must know that it will be impossible to prevail and to make fun of international justice, to which sooner or later they will be subjected. We call on the officials and the soldiers of the Armed Forces of Honduras to rectify and to put their weapons at the service of the people of Honduras and their general commander, President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales.

The member countries of ALBA, in consultation with the governments of the continent and with various institutions that guarantee the fulfilment of International Law, we are bringing forward measures so that the grave violations and the crimes that are being committed aren't gotten away with.

The only path that remains for the coup makers to abandon their attitude and to guarantee immediately, unconditionally, and definitely, the return of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales to his constitutional functions.

The Republic of Honduras is a full member of ALBA, and likewise of other regional integration and multilateral organisations, whose membership demand respect of the sovereignty of the people and the constitution. These fundamental conditions, having been violated by the coup makers, the governments of ALBA have decided to maintain all the cooperation programs that we have pre-empted with Honduras through President Zelaya.

Likewise, we propose that punitive measures are applied by all the multilateral integration organisations and mechanisms, which would help to enforce the immediate return to constitutional order in Honduras and would bring about the principles of action that Jose Marti referred to when he said, "Each person does their duty, and nothing can defeat us."

The governments of ALBA declare ourselves in a permanent consultation session, with all the governments of the continent, in order to evaluate further joint actions that enable us to accompany the Honduran people in the re-establishment of legality and the restitution of the President Manuel Zelaya Rosales.

Two hundreds years since the historic gesture that our peoples have developed throughout the continent, following the timeless example of the General of free men Augusto Cesar Sandino, of Francisco Morazan and faithful to the word of The Liberator Simon Bolivar, we put our hope with the people of Honduras and the peoples of the world for the sureness of victory, as, "all the peoples of the world who have wrestled for freedom have, in the end, exterminated their tyrants."

[1] Central American statesman, lawyer, orator, and general born in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, in 1792

[Translated by Kiraz Janicke and Tamara Pearson for Venezuelanalysis.com.]

Raul Castro: Cuba strongly condemns the coup in Honduras

HAVANA, Cuba, June 29 (acn) On behalf of the Cuban people, President Raul Castro strongly condemned on Monday the brutal coup d’état perpetrated early on Sunday against the constitutional Government and President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya.

Speaking during a meeting of the Rio Group in Nicaragua, the Cuban leader sent a message of solidarity to the Honduran people. Raul recalled the aggression by the military against President Zelaya and Honduran Foreign Minister Patricia Rodas along with the ambassadors of Venezuela, and Cuba and he added that this attack against the political constitutionality of the Central American nation has to be unanimously and strongly condemned by the Rio Group.

As President Chavez said last night, it is a moment to act according to our principles and to immediately expose those who condemn but, under the table, applaud, as has happened so many times in the past, Raul said.<

In Honduras, there is and there can only be one President, Jose Manuel Zelaya, who must unconditionally be reinstated, he added. There cannot be any negotiations with the coup supporters and no demands or conditions can be imposed on the legitimate government of President Zelaya.

The Cuban head of state recalled that the confrontation in Honduras is between the people’s aspirations to a better future and the interests of the oligarchic sectors that seek to perpetuate an unjust and unsustainable order.

Raul stressed that this conflict goes beyond the Honduran borders and is an expression of the danger of returning to the past, when military dictatorships, with the support of the United States, terrorised Latin America, particularly, the peoples of Central America and the Caribbean.

Recalling past coup attempts in Bolivia and Venezuela, Raul wondered if it is a coincidence that these two countries, plus Honduras are all members of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our Americas (ALBA), a regional integration and cooperation bloc.

These three examples show that the oligarchies and their forces have many means to resort to in order to hold back the course of history. Raul Castro affirmed that the fascist coup against President Zelaya is an insult to all the nations and governments of Latin America and the Caribbean and cannot remain unpunished. Its perpetrators will have to accept the consequences of their crimes in the sister nation of Honduras, he said.

The Cuban leader praised the work of Telesur television network and criticised media outlets that have worked in favour of those who staged the coup in order to misinform the people.

Finally, after saying he believes in the sincerity of US President Barack Obama and its State Secretary Hillary Clinton, he urged them to act in accordance with their statements. But they have to prove it with facts, not only with words, he stressed.

Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Ministry of People's Power for Foreign Affairs statement

Caracas, June 28, 2009 -- The Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela condemns the coup d’état that the Honduran oligarchy is attempting to perpetrate against the constitutional government of President Manuel Zelaya Rosales and the people of Honduras.

President Manuel Zelaya Rosales was kidnapped, removed from his home by force, rendered incommunicado for several hours, and violently expelled from his country by a group of unpatriotic, coup-mongering soldiers. The hooded soldiers kidnapped Chancellor Patricia Rodas and also arbitrarily detained and beat the Ambassadors of Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela. These shameless soldiers are responsible before national and international laws for the crimes that they are committing and for the violation of the constitution and its laws.

The government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela strongly urges the international community to condemn this situation and urges that the necessary measures be taken by us to defeat this coup d’état in Honduras and to reestablish the legitimate government of President Manuel Zelaya Rosales.

We will not be silent or humiliated! 

By the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH)

June 28, 2009 -- The COPINH condemns the cowardly and dirty coup d'tat against the Constitutional President of the Republic Manuel Zelaya Rosales. We denounce the fascist and terrorist role of the armed forces, of the national congress headed by Roberto Michelleti Bain, of the communications media of sectors of the ultra-right, and the rest of the institutions submissive to the interests of the oligarchy and imperialism that this morning kidnapped the president, prior to the initiation of the popular consultation.

The people are still participating in the non-binding referendum--even faced with repression, even as the campaign of fear continues, and even when confronted with the butt of soldiers' rifles. There is practically a state of siege in the capital and the rest of the country; electricity is cut off, they have a list of leaders to be captured, and Hondurans who are bravely demonstrating in front of the presidential residence are surrounded by tanks and helicopters.

Even so they have installed the polls and are exercising their right to participate in the consultation as a form of rebellion. The Honduran people are mobilizing.

Since early morning, our organization is calling out its members and has already begun the journey with representatives of the Lenca People on the way to Tegucigalpa.

We tell everyone that the Honduran people are carrying out large demonstrations, actions in their communities, in the municipalities; there are occupations of bridges, and a protest in front of the presidential residence, among others.

From the lands of Lempira, Morazán and Visitación Padilla, we call on the Honduran people in general to demonstrate in defense of their rights and of real and direct democracy for the people, to the fascists we say that they will NOT silence us, that this cowardly act will turn back on them, with great force.

We state that we do not recognize any "substitute" and WE WILL STRUGGLE FOR OUR PEOPLE, FOR OUR RIGHT TO DREAM OF A COUNTRY WITH JUSTICE, EQUITY, LIBERTY AND LIFE.

With the ancestral force of Iselaca and Lempira we raise our voices for life, justice, liberty, dignity and peace.

Restore democracy in Honduras!

Statement by the Socialist Alliance, Australia

July 2, 2009 -- The Socialist Alliance strongly condemns the June 28 coup d’etat by the military, members of the oligarchy and their political agents in Honduras. The violent kidnapping and expulsion to Costa Rica of democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya Rosales is an attempt to deny the people of Honduras their fundamental human rights to determine their own government and political future.

The coup took place as millions of Hondurans were preparing to exercise their right to vote for the first time in a consultative referendum on the future convening of a constitutional assembly to reform Honduras' constitution. The Zelaya government's proposal to draft a new constitution is the culmination of other measures under his presidency that have come under attack by conservative forces, including a significant increase in the minimum wage, measures to renationalise energy generation plants and telecommunications, signing a bill to greatly improve labour conditions for teachers, joining the Venezuelan Petrocaribe program, and delaying recognition of the new United States ambassador after the Bolivian government implicated the US embassy in supporting paramilitary groups destabilising Bolivia.

The Socialist Alliance also condemns the June 28 assassination by the armed forces of Honduran congressperson Cesar Ham, the organiser of the consultative referendum on a new constitution, and the abduction of Honduran foreign minister Patricia Rodas. The assault and attempted kidnapping on the Venezuelan, Cuban and Nicaraguan ambassadors in Honduras, who were trying to protect Rodas was a direct attack on the Bolivarian movement for unity and progressive change in Latin America.

The Socialist Alliance is very concerned for the safety of the human rights organisations that have supported the president and the efforts for constitutional reform. Reports of the military pursuing civil society leaders in the street and of leaders of the National Council of Indigenous Peoples being forced into hiding must be responded to by all who support freedom.

We applaud and stand in solidarity with the thousands of brave Hondurans who have mobilised to defend democracy by demonstrating in the streets and attempting to exercise their right to participate in the referendum despite intimidation and assault by the armed forces. We also solidarise with the Honduran trade unions and social movements calling for a general strike in support of their ousted president.

The Socialist Alliance congratulates the nine governments of ALBA, the Organization of American States and the UN General Assembly president Miguel D’Escoto for their immediate condemnation of the coup and support for Zelaya as the only legitimate president of Honduras. We note that the European Union and numerous governments have condemned the coup, and call on the Australian government to:

  • Refuse to recognise the congressional appointed ``de facto'' government of Roberto Michelletti;
  • Demand the immediate, safe return of the President Zelaya and foreign minister Rodas, and the reconstitution of the elected government;
  • Demand the immediate release of all political and social movement organisation leaders who have been detained by the military;
  • Insist on respect for the safety and human rights of all Hondurans; and
  • Support calls from the Honduran people for the coup leaders to be arrested and tried for their crimes.

We pledge the Socialist Alliance's active solidarity with the Honduran people’s fight for democracy and justice, and will continue to protest until the coup is overturned and democratic rights are reinstalled in Honduras.

COSATU condemns the coup in Honduras

By Patrick Craven

July 2, 2009 -- The Congress of South African Trade Unions calls on all democrats, workers and revolutionaries to condemn the coup in Honduras which has overthrown leftist President, Manuel Zelaya.
He was abducted from his official residence by the Honduran army and forcibly taken to Costa Rica on Sunday morning. It followed a growing controversy over a vote over term limits between the President and General Romeo Vasquez, who is reportedly in charge of the armed forces that abducted the President.

According to the US-based Institute for Southern Studies (ISS), "At least two leaders of the coup launched in Honduras on June 28 were apparently trained at a controversial Department of Defence school based at Fort Benning, Georgia, infamous for producing graduates linked to torture, death squads and other human rights abuses."

Also at stake is the life of Foreign Minister Patricia Rodas, whose whereabouts are unknown. She was with the ambassadors of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua in Honduras when 15 soldiers wearing ski masks broke into their meeting place. The soldiers pushed and beat then, stole their cell phones and took them to an air base.

These cruel acts are reminiscent of past dictators in Latin America, such as Pinochet, who were in the active service of US imperialism. These brutal dictatorships were used against to attack and kill communists and other revolutionary activists who were defending the people's natural resources and democratic rights.
This is a dastardly act of cowardice against a democratically elected leader of the Honduran people, who have chosen to follow the path of Cuba, Venezuela and other countries that have opted out of the clutches of neo-colonial imperialism supervised by the US.

This coup has lessons for Africa, where we also struggle daily with the reality of underdevelopment, neo-colonial plunder of our natural resources and destabilisation through proxy forces killing our people. We call on the global trade union movement to condemn this act, and defend democracy and the right of the Honduran people to choose their own leaders freely.

[Patrick Craven is national spokesperson for the Congress of South African Trade Unions.]

Labor Party Pakistan flays coup in Honduras

By Farooq Tariq

July 2, 2009 -- The Labour Party Pakistan (LPP) condemns the military takeover in Honduras. The LPP considers the coup an attack on democratic values not only in the country but all over the world.

The LPP is in solidarity with those peasants and workers in Honduras who are struggling to overthrow the generals and sacrificing their lives. It calls on all the progressive forces to unite for the restoration of the democracy.

The LPP thinks the ruling classes along with country's Supreme Court joined hands to put an end to pro-people reforms that President Manual Zelaya was implementing. The coup is a response by anti-democratic forces to changes benefiting the working classes.

The efforts of the President Zelaya to amend the constitution was a right step in a right direction. The current constitution, written in 1982 during the height of the US administration's dirty war in Central America, was designed to fortify ruling classes. Those in control of economic and political power do not want even a little interference by the masses.

President Zelaya's proposal for a referendum on the issue was his constitutional right. The support lent by a majority of labour unions and social movements in the country shows that his move had widespread support among the people.

The LPP condemns the fact that the military takeover in Honduras has not been mentioned very much in the mainstream media in Pakistan. The government has not issued any statement to condemn this takeover. The LPP demands the Pakistan government, led by Pakistan Peoples Party, condemn the coup and side with the forces striving to reverse the military takeover.

The LPP also condemns the American imperialism for its hidden support to the coup plotters and demands an immediate stop to violence against the pro-democracy activists taking to streets to agitate for the cause of democracy.

No to martial law! Reinstate President Zelaya! The anti-coup mass movement must be supported

Statement by the Partido Lakas ng Masa, Philippines

July 2, 2009 -- The Partido Lakas ng Masa, Philippines, adds its voice in strong condemnation of the coup attempt by the Honduran military hierarchy, the elite and other vested interests, to oust the legitimately elected President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras. We also condemn the attack on democratic and human rights by the coup leaders, including the killing, arrests and intimidation of our Honduran comrades leading the mass movements and social movements against elite interests, now protesting in the streets against the coup leaders.

We are extremely concerned about reports that the coup government in Honduras has passed a decree indefinitely suspending all constitutional rights in the country. We understand that this means the coup forces can enter homes without warrants, detain anyone with no notice or justification, prohibit all public gatherings, such as marches, rallies, protests or meetings, and maintain censorship of independent media.
This is the declaration and imposition of martial law in Honduras.

The imposition of martial law further confirms that the coup is anti-people and was engineered by elite interests in Honduras. The coup took place as the Honduran people were preparing to exercise their right to vote for the first time in a consultative referendum on the future convening of a constitutional assembly to reform Honduras' constitution, a process similar to that which took place in Venezuela, paving the way for the Bolivarian revolution in that country. It was also in response to several progressive measures taken by the Zelaya government, such as a significant increase in the minimum wage, measures to renationalise energy generation plants and telecommunications, signing a bill to greatly improve labour conditions for teachers and joining the regional formation ALBA spearheaded by Venezuela, Cuba and Bolivia.

The coup also represents a desperate attempt to stop the rise of the revolutionary and progressive movements in Latin America, a trend that US imperialism has been desperately trying to reverse. A coup against the Zelaya government can only serve elite and US imperialist interests in the region.
We applaud the solidarity demonstrated by the governments of Latin America, such as Venezuela, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador and others, who have mobilised against the coup, demanding the reinstatement of President Zelaya.

The Venezuelan revolution has shown the way of how to defeat elite-managed, pro-imperialist coups, when the masses mobilised and reinstated Hugo Chavez in a matter of 48 hours. The Honduran masses know this lesson well and have taken to the streets in defence of their rights.

We stand as one with this mass movement in the streets, demanding the reinstatement of President Zelaya. We demand the immediate lifting of martial law imposed by the coup regime, an end to the violation of human rights and the release of all political prisoners. The coup leaders and plotters must also be brought to trial for crimes against the people.

Only the masses, mobilised and united, can defeat the coup plotters.

Urgent call In solidarity with the organisations of Via Campesina and the people of Honduras

International Coordinating Committee (CCI) of Vía Campesina

Mali, Africa -- June 28, 2009 -- With the objective of deepening democracy and achieving broader democratic participation, for several months the social organisations of Honduras along with President Manuel Zelaya Rosales have promoted holding a survey (non-binding referendum) this June 28, 2009.

To our great surprise, today at 5 am, the armed forces carried out a coup d'etat against President Zelaya, blocking in this way, the democratic aspirations of the population that was preparing to carry out the popular consultation.

On hearing this news, the social organisations of of Honduras, including those of Via Campesina, have gone out into the streets to repudiate this deed and demand the return of President Zelaya to that functions that they law mandates.

The government of President Zelaya has been characterized by its defense of workers and campesinos, it is a defender of the Bolivarian Alternative of the Americas (ALBA), and during his administration it has promoted actions that benefit Honduran campesinos.

We believe that these deeds are the desperate acts of the national oligarchy and the hardcore right to preserve the interests of capital, and in particular, of the large transnational corporations. To that end, that have made use of the military forces and the institutions of the country such as the parliament, ministers, neoliberal press and others.

Faced with this unacceptable situation, Via Campesina International demands:

1. Re-establishment of the constitutional order, without bloodshed.

2. We call on the army not to repress the population of Honduras that demands a return to democracy.

3. That the physical integrity of social leaders, including Rafael Alegria -- international leader of Via Campesina -- is respected.

4. We demand the return of President Zelaya to his functions in Honduras.

5. That the authorities guarantee the full democratic exercise of the popular consultation, which is clearly a form of free expression.

From Via Campesina International, we are concerned for the safety of our leaders and organisations of Via Campesina, as well as what could happen to the people of Honduras, in these difficult times.

We also call on campesino organizations and other social movements to protest in front of the Honduran embassies and send letters rejecting the coup d'etat to the embassies in each of their countries.

We express our solidarity with our campesino organisations in Honduras.

Globalise the struggle! Globalise hope!

Socialist Party of Malaysia: No to coup in Honduras! Restore demoracy! Reinstate the democratically elected president!

June 30, 2009 -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) strongly condemns the coup d’etat organised by military and right-wing political elite in Honduras on June 28, 2009, which ousted the democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya.

The coup took place just hours before the people of Honduras go out to vote on a consultative referendum concerning whether to rewrite the constitution. The current Honduran constitution, which was written in 1982 during the height of the US administration’s dirty war in Central America, was designed to ensure the ruling elite who have closed ties with the imperialist US to consolidate their powers with little interference from the ordinary people.

The consultative referendum proposed by President Manuel Zelaya is merely an opinion poll for the Hondurans to determine whether they are prepared to enter into a democratic process to modify their constitution. The referendum though is a not-binding vote, has been viewed by many unions and peasant groups as a necessary precursor to economic reforms favoring Honduras's poor majority. Yet, the right-wing political elites are threatened by it and used every mean to stop the people of Honduras to determine their future by themselves.

President Manuel Zelaya, elected in 2005, has increasingly come under attack by the right-wing forces in Honduras for his growing relationship with the ALBA countries. The coup is clearly a cowardice act by the right-wing political elite and US-backed economic interests which in fear of losing their grip on this Central American country when it move closer with countries which are now undergoing revolutionary process like Venezuela.

The PSM demands:

1) Restore democracy in Honduras

2) Immediately reinstate the democratically elected President Zelaya

3) People of Honduras have their right to determine whether to re-write the out-dated imperialist influenced constitution in order to restructure its society for the benefit of ordinary vast majority.

No to coup! Power to the People!

Military coup in Honduras condemned – Sinn Féin

29ú Meitheamh 2009 -- June 29, 2009 -- Sinn Féin international spokesperson Raymond McCartney MLA has condemned the military coup in Honduras and demanded the immediate release of the democratically elected President, Manuel Zelaya.

Speaking from Stormont this afternoon Mr McCartney said: “I want to condemn the kidnapping and military coup against the democratic President of Honduras Manuel Zelaya. The military coup against the President is an illegal attempt to overthrow the progressive social agenda chosen by the Honduran people.These type of military coups have inflicted decades of suffering and pain upon peoples across Latin America and the Irish Government must add its voice to those calling for the immediate release of President Zelaya. The democratic wishes of the Honduran people must be respected and must be protected from this illegal move.” 

Latin American Committee and Wellington Zapatista Support Group

June 29, 2009 -- The Latin American Committee and the Wellington Zapatista Support Group strongly condemn Sunday’s military coup against the Constitutional President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya Rosales.

We also strongly condemn the assassination of Honduran congressman Cesar Ham, organiser of the Opinion Poll on a New Constitution, and the abduction of Honduran Foreign Minister Patricia Rodas on the same day.

We are deeply concerned by reports that there is a virtual state of siege in the capital Tegucigalpa, where electricity and telephones have been cut off, radio and state television stations shut down, Hondurans demonstrating in front of the presidential residence are surrounded by tanks and helicopters, and members of opposition parties are being rounded up and detained.

We note that:

  • the United States ambassador to Honduras has stated that "The only president the United States recognizes is President Manuel Zelaya",
  • the Organization of American States (OAS) has unanimously backed President Manuel Zelaya as the only legitimate president of Honduras,
  • US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton said “The action taken against Honduran Presdient Manuel Zelaya violates the precepts of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, and thus should be condemned by all”,
  • the United Nations General Assembly President Miguel D’Escoto “clearly and strongly condemns the attempted coup d’etat that is currently unfolding against the democratically elected Government of President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras”,
  • Numerous governments have condemned the coup, including those of Cuba, Argentina, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Venezuela, and the European Union'
  • and request that the New Zealand Government immediately condemn the coup in Honduras, and demand the return of President Zelaya to his country.

Latin America Solidarity Committee, lac [at] apc.org. nz, http://www.converge .org.nz/lac/ index.htm

Venezuela Solidarity Campaign (Britain) statement on military coup in Honduras

By Francisco Dominguez, secretary Venezuela Solidarity Campaign  

Today (Sunday, June 29, 2009) there was to be non-binding national consultation as to whether the people of Honduras agreed to hold referenda at the end of the year for a new Constitional Assembly and for a new constitution. Just on Saturday June 28, President Zelaya was meeting international observers regarding details of today's referendum.

Early this morning -- June 29 -- (about 5:45 am Honduran time) heavily armed units of the military (according to eyewitnesses, about 200 soldiers) occupied the presidential palace, arrested democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya in his personal residence, kidnapped him, taking him to an unknown destination. Eyewitnesses inform that President Zelaya's personal residence is surrounded by soldiers. Telesur report that President Zelaya confirmed by phone that he is in Costa Rica.

The military then proceeded to close down Channel 8, the state TV channel to prevent it from informing the population.

President Manuel Zelaya's supporters are congregating in the streets of the capital and are moving to surround the presidential palace to demand the return of their president.

We totally and absolutely condemn the coup against democratically-elected President Manuel Zelaya and demand his immediate and unconditional release as well as the immediater release of anybody else that might have been arrested by the plotters.

We demand:

1. The immediate restitution of the constitutional order interrupted by the military coup underway in Honduras.

2. No violence of any kind to be unleashed against the civilian population, or any of the those arrested by those carrying out the coup d'etat. There are worrying reports emerging from Tegucigalpa -- Honduras' capital city -- of military violence against civilians.

3. We also urge the UK government to unequivocally condemn the coup and demand the release of President Zelaya, and the immediate return to the constitutional order.

4. We also call upon President Barack Obama to demonstrate with acts his expressed desire to inaugurate a new period of respectful relations with the republics in Latin America, by also unreservedly condemning the coup d'etat, stating that the US will not recognise any other government in Honduras except that of the democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya.

Ken Livingstone, the former Mayor of London, and president of the Venezuela Solidarity Campaign, has condemned the military coup in Honduras and demanded the release of the democratically elected President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya.

Ken Livingstone said: ``I totally condemn the military coup and kidnapping of the democratically elected President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya. President Zelaya was working to free his country from decades hunger and poverty. This military coup is an illegal attempt to use armed force to overturn the course of democracy and social progress chosen by the Honduran people at the polls. The world should unite to stop this attempt to return Latin America to the bloody past of military coups to block the will of the people.

``I call particularly upon the British government to unreservedly condemn this military coup and to demand the immediate release of President Zelaya and to urge President Obama, who has promised a new era of relations between the US and South America, to do everything in his power to support the release of President Zelaya and restoration of democracy in Honduras.''

Bolivarian Circle of the Netherlands statement

www.circulobolivariano -- July 1, 2009 -- The Bolivarian Circle of the Netherlands joins the solidarity with the people of Honduras and the democratic and legitimate government formed by President Manuel Zelaya.

We openly reject the kidnapping of the president of Honduras, as well as the agression against the embassadors of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela.

We condemn the kidnapping of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Patricia Rodas, and we empathise with the pain the coup has caused for the family of the victims.

We call out for the international organisations to demand freedom of speech and mobility for the people of Honduras.

We request the democratic countries not to acknowledge the temporary government that has been installed by the ones who inflicted the coup and to demand the return of democracy.

We strongly support the unity of the ALBA countries; this Bolivarian unity, which is a regional proposal for integration with a new economic moral, with the aim of banishing poverty.

These fraternally united countries today take their responsibility and support the democratically chosen president Zelaya and his people who mobilise at this moment to save their president and the Democracy.

The noble ideals of President Zelaya we see today being limited with brutal effort by a powerful, social sector from the army, a sector of the legal power and a group within the government, that wants to give a false impression of the constitutional state.

We call up the soldiers of Honduras not to shoot at its own people.

We summon the international community not to be deceived, the military coup is illegal and antidemocratic.

We show our deep concern for the prisoners and the persecuted. We condemn the killings which have been caused by the fascistic oppression of the unarmed people.

The people of Honduras and their president Manuel Zelaya are not alone. Our rejection of this coup d'etat corresponds to the demand for justice expressed all over the world.

The peace of Latin America is in danger. It is legitimate and justified to break with the economic dependance.

The capitalistic crisis manifests itself in new ways, let us not accept the fact that the unprotected people have to pay the bill of the capitalistic system.

Yes to participative democracy, to the right of the Honduran people to be consulted.

For the sake of democracy and peace. Let us condemn the injustice going on in Honduras. 

Comments

Venezuela Proposes United Nations Military Action

The presidents of Honduras (left), Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Ecuador in Nicaragua (Minci)

Mérida, July 1st 2009 (Venezuelanalysis.com) -- On Tuesday Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez proposed multi-national military, economic, and legal measures to restore Honduran President Manuel Zelaya to the presidency and bring an end to the military coup d'etat that began last Sunday, if planned diplomatic measures fail.  

Zelaya plans to defy the coup and return to Honduras on Saturday along with a delegation of Latin American leaders, including the presidents of Argentina and Ecuador. The coup leaders have vowed to arrest Zelaya upon his return.

"Aggression against the delegation that goes to Honduras would open another type of door," said Chavez. "Then, we would have to consider, for example, a military intervention by the United Nations."  

Chavez explained his proposal. "I am not a supporter of this measure, but I throw it out there as a hypothesis: A United Nations or OAS resolution, a political and diplomatic force with international military backup, this would have to be considered," he said.  

Chavez also urged the Honduran armed forces to oppose the coup. "We call on the military of Honduras not to attack the people or the president," said Chavez, who himself was kidnapped in a military coup in 2002 and restored to power by a counter-coup led by the pro-Chavez ranks within the military.

Chavez's proposals came as the United Nations (UN), the Organization of American States (OAS), and the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), a Latin American fair trade bloc, condemned the coup and called for Zelaya's immediate reinstatement.

Chavez commended these declarations, but said nations who oppose the coup should be prepared to back up their words with actions, and force the coup leaders to turn power over to the legitimate president, Zelaya, "without conditions."

"We have to put an end to public condemnation followed by silence; this is complicity. We should not leave these important meetings just with very important declarations, and then leave Manuel Zelaya as a lost soul," said Chavez.

Chavez also said he will propose cutting off oil supplies to Honduras during an emergency meeting of the Caribbean energy integration bloc Petrocaribe, of which Honduras is a member. Petrocaribe countries receive favorable rates on Venezuelan oil and loans for energy development, in exchange for goods and services.

As a legal measure, Chavez urged the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, an autonomous institution of the OAS, to send a commission to assess the situation in Honduras. Likewise, Bolivian President Evo Morales sent a proposal to the OAS for the creation of an ad hoc inter-American tribunal to "file and process complaints, investigate, and sanction those who have committed crimes against democracy in Honduras." 

Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, have already cut off cross-border commerce with Honduras. Also, the European Union suspended talks of an association with Central American nations due to the coup.

Member countries of the ALBA bloc have pulled their ambassadors from Honduras, which joined the bloc last year to the dismay of the right wing opposition. On Tuesday, the de facto coup government passed a resolution to evaluate the "convenience" of Honduras's continued membership in the ALBA.

Meanwhile, coup leaders have violently shut down or taken over most media outlets by breaking down doors, throwing transmittion equipment on the floor, detaining reporters in military vehicles, and threatening to shoot them if they move, according to independent video recordings circulated by internet.

Military personnel also detained several reporters from the Caracas-based Telesur television channel, which had provided detailed coverage of the coup early on. According to Edgardo Castro, a Telesur correspondent in Honduras, "The coup government has obligated the owners of cable companies to cut off Telesur's signal and only permit international signals that support the coup government," such as CNN.

Journalists, activists, and government officials demonstrated in a car parade through Caracas in defense of Telesur on Tuesday.

The remaining independent media in Honduras have released video recordings of thousands of anti-coup protestors singing songs, chanting for Zelaya's return, and blocking off streets by burning tires and throwing rocks at security forces. Military and riot police have reportedly used rubber bullets, tear gas, and other unidentified chemicals to break up the protests outside the presidential palace, causing at least one death and many injuries. The coup government has continued to arrest pro-Zelaya government officials.

The United States government tentatively acknowledged that an "illegal" coup occurred in Honduras, but has not called for Zelaya's reinstatement. On Wednesday, the U.S. embassy in Honduras cut off travel and business visas for those involved in the coup. One of the coup leaders, General Romeo Vásquez, was trained in the U.S. School of the Americas between 1976 and 1984, according to School of the Americas Watch.

After Vasquez disobeyed Zelaya's orders to distribute electoral material for a non-binding national poll on whether to hold a referendum to re-write the nation's constitution last week, Zelaya fired Vasquez. The Honduran Supreme court ordered Vasquez's reinstatement, and the Congress declared Zelaya's electoral initiative illegal. On Sunday morning, military personnel kidnapped Zelaya at his home and left him in Costa Rica.

Source URL (retrieved on Jul 2 2009 - 19:17): http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/4575
License: Published under a Creative Commons license (by-nc-sa). See creativecommons.org for more information.

Coup not for me

Solidarity and left movements condemn coup, demand elected president be returned to power........" I didnt like coup because indonesian have a coup d etat at 30 set 1965, hundred people die in this act"

Down with the Coup in Honduras

July 6, 2009

The Freedom Socialist Party joins the international labor movement in
calling for the reinstatement of President Manuel Zelaya and the
prosecution of coup leaders including General Romeo Vasquez, a School
of the Americas graduate.  We call on the Honduran government to
immediately release all political prisoners and reinstate freedom of speech
and assembly, including lifting the curfews and the gag rules against
the press.

At the same time, we call on the Obama administration to recall the U.S.
ambassador, cut off $45 million in military aid and economic assistance
to the Honduran regime, and reject any attempt to negotiate with the coup
makers or support amnesty for those involved.

Our support for reinstating President Zelaya does not imply approval of his
free trade policies. As a member of the Liberal Party, he endorsed the
Central American Free Trade Agreement and advocated other neo-liberal
programs. A timber magnate and a member of the landowning class,
Zelaya infuriated the Honduran oligarchy by joining ALBA, the trading bloc
created by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, and enacting measures
to benefit the poor, but clearly he is no radical.

However, the Freedom Socialist Party supports the democratic right of the
Honduran majority--who are peasants, workers, unemployed, students,
etc.--to decide for themselves who shall rule, not the rightwing Honduran
military.

Background to the coup

The immediate reason the military ejected President Zelaya from office
was because he was going to hold a national opinion poll on whether to
amend the constitution through a referendum. The proposed poll was to
be nonbinding, but the possibility that the people might amend their
constitution to increase their rights threatened the establishment to such
a degree that it resorted to a military putsch.

However, this was not Zelaya's only "crime" in the eyes of the elite. Worse,
he had raised the minimum wage, reduced the price of gas and attempted
to nationalize the importing of oil.

The current constitution, written in 1982 during the height of the Reagan
administration's dirty war in Central America, was designed to ensure that
those in power would retain it with little interference from the people.  One
of its stipulations was that only Congress could amend the constitution, a
provision that the president was challenging by raising the possibility of
a referendum.

Several days before the opinion poll was to take place, the Honduran
Supreme Court ruled it illegal. This announcement was met with massive
protests.  When the head of the high military command, General Vasquez,
refused to distribute the election materials, the president fired him. 

The Supreme Court stepped in once more and reinstated General
Vasquez, claiming that his dismissal was unconstitutional.  Thousands of
people took to the streets again to demand the poll be conducted as
scheduled.  Two days later President Zelaya was kidnapped by the military
and forced to leave the country. 

The Congress and the Supreme Court gave this slowly unfolding coup
scenario a façade of legality by voting for the President's removal. But
both are dominated by anti-Zelaya and National Party forces that represent
the oligarchy, the military and the Catholic Church hierarchy--institutions
that are deeply corrupt and are submissive to imperialism.

The U.S. role

Clearly the coup could not have happened without U.S. knowledge and
passive approval, if not outright assistance.

The Honduran political and economic elite depend on the backing of the
U.S. to rule. For instance, Honduras receives millions from USAID for
"democracy promotion" which goes to political parties and NGOs
favorable to U.S. interests.

As importantly, the Honduran military is trained by U.S. forces, many of
whom are stationed at the Soto Cano Air Base, just 50 miles from the
capital city of Tegucigalpa. Six hundred troops and numerous Air Force
combat planes and helicopters were in Honduras at the time of the
takeover. The mere threat of withdrawing this force would have been
enough to stop the coup before it started.

Honduras has been the victim of numerous dictatorships installed by
massive U.S. intervention during the past century including several
military invasions.  The most despicable acts occurred during the 1980s
when the Reagan administration, represented by U.S. Ambassador John
Negroponte, used Honduras as a launching pad for the anti-Sandinista
"contras" and as a death camp for communists, guerrillas, unionists and
community activists involved in the civil wars in Guatemala and
El Salvador.

In solidarity with workers in our hemisphere

The Freedom Socialist Party is committed to building a revolutionary
socialist movement in the U.S. that can end the crimes of U.S.
imperialism and write a new chapter in relations among the peoples of
our hemisphere.

When the government arms, trains and funds the oligarchies of Central
America, it shames us as working people to see the holocaust that rains
down on our neighbors' heads. For this reason, we stand with Honduran
workers and peasants (who are the poor in Honduras) and endorse all
their mobilizations to defeat the coup by engaging in mass demonstrations
and strikes, including the nationwide walkout by teachers, banana workers,
and the three largest public sector unions. In addition, we call for the
closure of U.S. bases in Honduras, the removal of U.S. troops, and the
nationalization, under workers control, of U.S. corporate holdings and
companies in the country. 

For socialism and justice in our hemisphere, in our time!
___________________________________________________________

Freedom Socialist Party

U.S. Section
4710 University Way NE, #100
Seattle, WA 98105
USA

Australian Section
PO Box 266
Brunswick, VIC 3055
Australia

Canada and Honduras

~~~~~~~~~~~~(((( T h e B u l l e t ))))~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A Socialist Project e-bulletin .... No. 234 .... July 7, 2009
_______________________________________________

Yves Engler

Hostility to the military coup in Honduras is increasing. So is the Harper government's isolation on the issue.

At Saturday's special meeting of the Organization of American States (OAS) Canada's minister for the Americas, Peter Kent, recommended that ousted President Manuel Zelaya delay his planned return to the country. Kent said the “time is not right” prompting Zelaya to respond dryly: “I could delay until January 27 [2010]” when his term ends. Kent added that it was important to take into account the context in which the military overthrew Zelaya, particularly whether he had violated the Constitution.

Along with three Latin American heads of states, Zelaya tried to return to Honduras on Sunday. But the military blocked his plane from landing and kept a 100,000 plus crowd of supporters at bay. In doing so the military killed two protesters and wounded at least 30. On CTV Kent blamed Zelaya for the violence.

This was Kent's most recent attack against Zelaya. In June Kent criticized Zelaya's plan for a non-binding public poll on whether to hold consultations to reopen the constitution. “We have concerns with the government of Honduras,” he said a couple of weeks ago. “There are elections coming up this year and we are watching very carefully the behaviour of the government and what seems to be an attempt to amend the constitution to allow consecutive presidencies.”

With political tensions increasing in Honduras, two days before the coup the OAS passed a resolution supporting democracy and the rule of law in that country. Ottawa's representative to the OAS remained silent on the issue. Foreign Affairs took a similar position in the hours after Zelaya was kidnapped by the military. Eight hours after Zelaya's ouster last Sunday morning a Foreign Affairs spokesperson told Notimex that Canada had ‘no comment’ regarding the coup. It was not until late in the evening, after basically every country in the hemisphere denounced the coup, that Ottawa finally did so.

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Berdikari/Papernas (Indonesia) statement on Honduras

July 2, 2009

Denounce Military Coup in Honduras!
Bring Back Democracy in Honduras!


BERDIKARI ONLINE, Jakarta, On June 28 2009, the Honduran military carried out illegal action of taking over power from President Manuel Zelaya. It is clearly a well planned military coup d'etat. After ousting Zelaya, the head of Honduran Parliament, Roberto Micheletti, was sworn in as the new president. Besides forficbly removing the president, the coup mongers also arrested some officials from the embassy of Cuba, Venezuela dan Nicaragua. Moreover, the military shot dead a left wing senator, Cesar Ham, and arrested a number of leaders from some mass organisations such as the Popular Bloc Coordinating Committee, Via Campesina and the Civic Council of Grassroots and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras.

Manuel Zelaya became the President of Honduras after being elected by a democratically run election on November 17 2005. During his term, he has been critical of companies that gives their workers low wages. He then decided to raise the minimum wages 60%. It was a policy strongly protested by the elites, but fully supported by labour unions and the masses. In international level, Zelaya brought his country to join the Bolivarian Alternative of the Americas (ALBA) to strengthen solidarity based economic cooperation and to endorse the Latin America regional integration that challenge imperialism.

The military coup in Honduras is unjustifiable. Although the Honduran military seems to prepre the coup on its own, we also see US involvement. First, the US government tried to disrupt and halt the Latin America integration effort, which has been well promoted by President Chavez, and try to isolate the anti-neoliberal and anti-imperialist pole in Latin America.

Secondly, for decades the US government have tried to protect its political and economic interests in Honduras. Since 1980, the US government have actively provided conditional aid to the right wing in Honduras, including to several NGOs and political parties in order to protect US interest in the region.

Thirdly, Washington has had close relationship with the Honduran military, both through technical aid and funding. On this matter, Latin American historian and journalist, Gred Granding, told 'Democracy Now' that the Honduran military has been effectively subsidised and funded by the US government. Even, if there is a Latin American country that entirely belongs to the US, it would be Honduras.

Therefore, US involvement, both directly and indirectly is a reversion of Obama's promises that seek to established new and friendlier relationship with other nations. For this case, we believe that Obama has become a mere puppet that carries on Bush reactionary policies. It does not rule out the chance that this sort of action will be implemented to other countries that challenge US interest.

We in Indonesia, who are currently carrying out the most intensive struggle against the continuation of neoliberal regime, proclaim our solidarity to the struggle of Honduran people in recovering democracy. In the last few days, the Honduran military have committed acts of violence against people who protested in the streets. Some mass media were banned and people are denied of access of information. As part of the global citizens that suffer from and exploited by the very system of capitalism, we voice our protest against the coup in Honduras during our anti-neoliberalis mass actions in dozens of cities across Indonesia.

Lastly, we convey our political stance regarding the latest political situation in Honduras;

1. To demand that the Indonesian Government refuse to recognise the government of Roberto Micheletti and make an official release to condemn the Honduran military as criminal perpetrators.

2. To demand the international community to recover democracy in Honduras; to help return President Manuel Zelaya, who carries the mandate of the people; and to respect the democratic political process in that country.

3. To demand the international community to pressure the dictatorship government of Roberto Micheletti to release all arrested activists and return the press and access of information to the people

4. To call to the people of Indonesia to forge anti-neoliberalism struggle, by rejecting the US-endorsed pro-neoliberal presidential and vice-presidential candidates

Solidarity Greetings,

Fight Neoliberalism and Imperialism !

CADTM denounces the elite coup in Honduras

http://www.cadtm.org/spip.php?article4563

The Committee for the Abolition of the Abolition of Third World Debt (CADTM) denounces the coup orchestrated by the reactionary oligarchy in Honduras and demands President Zelaya’s return to power

8 July

On Sunday 28 June Manuel Zelaya, President of Honduras, was sequestrated then expelled by the army. The CADTM condemns this coup orchestrated both by reactionary sectors of society (the army, the oligarchy, the Church, the judiciary power, the dominant media) and by the Pentagon. This coup aims at brutally bringing to an end the Hondurian people’s aspirations to change, that were taking shape with the launch of a popular consultation to open the way to a Consitutant Assembly process.

Ideed on that very day the President had consulted the Hondurians on setting up a fourth ballot during the general elections to be held in November 2009, a ballot devoted to the election of a national Constituant Assembly that would draft a new Constitution. The first three ballots were for the election of the President, of MPs, and of mayors respectively. In order to justify the unjustifiable in the eyes of international public opinion, the Congress and the Supreme Court decided that this consultation was illegal. Now it so happens that it is part of the law on social participation |1| voted by the Congress on 27 January 2006, and more largely relies on the right of peoples to self-determination as stipulated in such major legal texts as the UN Charter. Moreover, to validate their coup and designate de facto a new government, his opponents mentioned a resignation letter by Sr Zelaya, which the President says he never signed.

It is also to be noted that contrary to what the major media have been repeating, Manuel Zelaya was in no way trying, through this consultation, to extend his presidential mandate on the occasion of the next elections. Indeed, these are to be held in the context of the current Constitution within which presidential mandates run for four years and cannot be renewed. In fact, though himself a member of the local oligarchy and a member of the Liberal Party President Zelaya had started confronting the Hondurian oligarchy in that he had shifted to the Left and joined ALBA (the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of America), which also involved taking a number of progressive measures to support the lower classes (such as establishing minimum wages). The proposal to elect a Constituant Assembly in order to change the current Constitution, which is hardly conducive to in-depth social transformations, was obviously one step too far. Indeed the ruling classes are afraid of losing their priviledges, as was the case in Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela, where constituant assemblies led to adopting new progressive Constitutions that radically affected their position in that they gave representatives of the population control on natural resources, legalised the rights of minorities and of indigenous peoples, and set up measures to fight indebtedness.

With the military coup the people had its right to self-determination taken away through illegal and criminal manouevering by the Hondurian riling classes, a traditional stronghold of neoliberal orthodoxy and of the Washington Consensus, firmly decided as they are to prevent the needed social reforms and to maintain a neoliberal order which can only generate poverty and inegalities.

Fortunately the popular resistance and the support of several Latin-American presidents to President Zelaya are leading to divisions within the army. We can only hope that the combinaison of protests within Honduras and of international solidarity will promptly bring President Zelaya back to power.

The CADTM insists on voicing its complete solidarity with the Hondurian population as it firmly rejects the coup, and demands the end of the repression directed against demonstrators and leaders of social and trade union movements.

The CADTM supports the resistance of the people who organise vigils and a general strike to demand the return of democratically elected President Zelaya and the restoration of constitutional order.

Lastly, the CADTM along with the Hondurian people, calls for a referendum on the process of the Constituant Assembly. This is the only way of giving Hondurians as all other peoples in the North and in the South a right to self-determination.

For the CADTM, the solidarity between citizens and social movements is absolutely necessary. It must grow into a large popular movement to bring down the letal neoliberal logic and replace it with a radically different logic based on the guarantee of fundamental human rights. To this end, the complete and unconditional cancellation of the debt owed by all countries of the South is a first necessary condition.

Translated by Christine Pagnoulle

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