<i>"The Name of Our Country is América" - Simon Bolivar</i> The Narco News Bulletin<br><small>Reporting on the War on Drugs and Democracy from Latin America
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National Resistance Against the Coup d’Etat Announces Boycott of November 29 Honduras Elections

Coup Regime’s Noncompliance with the October 30 Accord Renders Last Week’s Agreement Moot


By Tamar Sharabi
Reporting from Tegucigalpa

November 6, 2009

TEGUCIGALPA, HONDURAS, NOVEMBER 6, 2009: Hundreds of people have congregated daily outside the Honduran National Congress to pressure its members (known as ‘Diputados,’ or Deputies) to finally reinstate President Manuel Zelaya. The new wave of hope came after the US State Department’s visit that many interpret as a tactic to guarantee the November 29 elections. While US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton proclaimed a “breakthrough in negotiations in Honduras,” things on the ground still seemed to be at a stalemate as of Thursday afternoon, November 5, the date that, according to the accord signed last week, should have brought – but didn’t bring – the end of the coup regime.

In response to the never-ending and not so genuine negotiations, the National Resistance Front Against the Coup d’Etat published this statement:

The National Resistance Front against the Coup d’Etat announces to the Honduran population and the international community:

Whereas:

1.That during 131 consecutive days of the struggle, we have pressured for a peaceful resolution to the political crisis that our country has lived resulting from the coup d’état perpetrated by the Honduran Oligarchy. In this period we have supported the initiatives that have been driven by various national and international sectors, maintaining three fundamental demands: a) the return of institutional order with the restitution of the legitimate president Manuel Zelaya Rosales, b) respect for our sovereign right to install a National Constituent Assembly that brings together the country and c) punishment for the violators of human rights.

2.That the call of the agreement Tegucigalpa-San Jose contains the priority element the return of constitutional order and literally states its purpose as “to bring back the title of the Executive Power to the state previous to the that of June 28 until the conclusion of the actual governing period, January 27, 2010”

3.That the National Congress, coauthor of the breaking of constitutional order on the June 28, is using delaying tactics, in not wanting to convene the complete assembly in order to repeal the decree that installed the de facto regime.

4.That the OEA and the government of the United States, who we consider accomplice of the military coup d’état, do not represent our interests in the definitive exit of the people involved in the coup d’état out of power.

So we resolve:

1.If today, Thursday, November 5, no later than midnight President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales is not reinstated to his position, the National Resistance Front against the Coup d’Etat will not recognize the electoral process and its results.

2.We alert all the organizations in the resistance on a national level so that in case President Zelaya is not reinstated in the established period to be ready to execute the actions of negating the farse elections.

3.We call on the international community to maintain the position that the de facto regime and the elections of November 29 are illegitimate.

We resist and we will be victorious!
Tegucigalpa, M.D.C. 5 of November 2009

Many resistance members have commented that the same Congress that invented the President’s resignation letter last June is now being trusted to clean up the mess.

US officials have given mixed signals about whether they will recognize the 29 elections regardless of whether President Zelaya is restored. On Wednesday, State Department spokesman Ian Kelly danced around reporters’ questions that sought more specificity:

QUESTION: It appears as though, as long as the congress agrees on something, you’re willing to accept it even it falls short of Zelaya being restored before the election.

MR. KELLY: I think what we’re saying is that we want the two parties to agree.

Despite last week’s US Delegation and the accord that resulted, police and military repression continue. On Thursday Oct 29, Day 124 of the resistance, a peaceful march organized by the resistance movement and the UD, the Democratic Unification Party, the only national political party to oppose the coup from the beginning, came under physical attack from coup security forces. The Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE, in its Spanish initials) had granted the UD party a permit to hold the march. Interestingly enough, October 29 was also the first day that control over the military was transferred to the TSE purportedly to guarantee the ‘safety’ of the elections.

All the major news agencies were covering the official press conference being held at the American Embassy when the action broke out. The repression on this day was different because there was almost no warning on the attack. The march was making its way through a neighborhood called El Prado, passing by the main offices of TSE. As a few protestors ripped down election material, military trucks arrived and started beating anyone in sight.

After canisters of tear gas were shot into the crowd, people dispersed in all directions. Approximately 300 reassembled within the hour near the Marriot Hotel, two blocks away from the Presidential Palace. Once again, the military regrouped and attacked the crowd. Soldiers followed people into the bathrooms of local businesses to pull them out and either beat them or temporarily detain them.

Andres Pavón, director of CODEH, the Committee of Human Rights in Honduras, reported 12 people receiving medical attention with severe lesions. Since soldiers and police have arrested people from the public hospital in Tegucigalpa, Hospital Escuela, it is likely more people were in need of medical attention but too frightened to present themselves. Many people who are victims of last Thursday’s police repression prefered to take refuge in CPTRT, Center for the Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation for Victims of Torture and their Families.

So what conclusions can we draw from the US State Department visit? Considering the US Embassy’s media contacts list or following the mainstream media, one might be lead to believe that the State Department delegation truly was as historic as Secretary Clinton claimed it was. The walls of Tegucigalpa, though, shout a different message: “Solo el pueblo salva el pueblo,” (Only the people save the people). On the ground, most people never really trusted any of the diplomatic visits in the first place.

As of midnight last night, the National Resistance Front against the Coup d’Etat will begin its process of delegitimizing the electoral process. In a statement issued by President Zelaya, from the Brazilian Embassy in Tegucigalpa where he has taken refuge the past 46 days and nights, he said that the coup regime was plotting “a giant political-electoral fraud” through “constant violations of human rights, the cancellation of public liberties, the shutdown and confiscation of media like Channel 36 and Radio Globo, and the situation of having the President who was elected by the people surrounded by military soldiers in the diplomatic seat and the overall political persecution.” Zelaya added:

“We announce our total non-recognition of this electoral process and its results. Due to the above mentioned violations, elections under a dictatorship are a fraud to the people.”

The de facto government on the other hand, went about interpreting the Tegucigalpa/San Jose Accord as it pleased, supposedly naming its reconciliatory government while maintaining coup “president” Roberto Micheletti in power. The US will now have to answer to the international community – including the Organization of American States (OAS) – as the only government that says it might recognize the Nov 29 elections in Honduras.

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The Narco News Bulletin: Reporting on the Drug War and Democracy from Latin America