BTL:Honduras Coup: Reaction to President Zelaya's Social Justice Agenda
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Thursday, Jul. 09, 2009 at 1:14 PM
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BETWEEN THE LINES Syndicated Radio Newsmagazine
Honduras Coup: Reaction to President Zelaya's Social Justice Agenda
Interview with Laura Carlsen, director of the Center for International Policy's Americas Program, based in Mexico City, conducted by Scott Harris
After mounting opposition to a non-binding referendum on reforming the Honduran constitution, the military forcibly removed the president of Honduras, Manual Zelaya from power on June 28. After the coup was executed, Zelaya was arrested and flown to Costa Rica by the Honduran military. The leader installed by the coup makers, Roberto Micheletti, insisted that the removal of the elected president at gunpoint was legal and justified the coup by declaring that Zelaya had broken Honduras law by proceeding with the referendum despite a Supreme Court ruling. Critics of Zelaya's progressive economic policies, feared that he would use constitutional reforms to extend his term in office which is due to end in January 2010.
Nations around the world including the United States condemned the coup, with the Organization of American States initiating negotiations to restore Zelaya to power. When their efforts failed, OAS members voted unanimously to suspend Honduras from the hemispheric organization, which now faces trade sanctions and the loss of loans and aid.
On July 5, Zelaya's attempt to fly back to Honduras was thwarted by the military when they blocked the runway at the Tegucigalpa airport. Soldiers prevented thousands of pro-Zelaya's protesters from entering the airport and shot into the crowd, killing at least one activist and injuring dozens. Zelaya's supporters vowed to ratchet up their protests with strikes and by blockading the nation's main highways. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Laura Carlson, director of the Center for International Policy's America's Program based in Mexico City, who examines the events which led to the coup and what role, if any, did Washington play in the ouster of President Zelaya.
Contact the Center by calling (202) 232-3317 or visit their website at http://www.ciponline.org
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