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Monday, January 11, 2010

News from Honduras

The new president and government will take power on Jan. 27 and no doubt in spite of the fact that Micheletti seems to have no plans to resign or form a govt. of national unity involving Zelaya the US will find it in its heart and interest to restart aid both military and other. The US has been trying to arrange another deal with Zelaya behind the scenes but the coup govt. does not seem ready to give an inch and never has. Why should it? The US is a pushover when it comes to a coup that it sees in its own interest.
Interestingly some in the military may face trial when they were in effect doing exactly what the coup leaders wanted. This may make for some bad blood between the politicians and the military although perhaps the military may not need to worry that much. The courts after all were against Zelaya so they can probably find enough extenuating circumstances to spare the military from any punishment. This is from hondurascoup. Note that the government is still repressing opposition media.

Saturday, January 9, 2010
Honduras is Broke
Eighteen days after Porfirio Lobo Sosa takes office, the country of Honduras will run out of cash and be unable to pay its debts without the help of international aid, says Gabriela Nuñez. The only way the country has survived the last six months is by living off its cash income and paying its debts off in a prioritized fashion, or rather, not paying some of them. "The most important thing is to comply with the priorities," she said, "even if there are pending payments that remain....its a work from week to week."
Posted by rns at 4:25 AM 1 comments Links to this post
Labels: Gabriela Nuñez
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Supreme Court Assigns Judge in Military Case
The Supreme Court, after meeting as a whole today, assigned the Chief Justice, Jorge Alberto Rivera, to hear the case presented by the Public Prosecutor against the 5 generals of the military high command and to decide whether the case has merit and can proceed, according to El Heraldo's Minute by Minute column. On Tuesday, the Public Prosecutor, Luis Rubi, filed a complaint with the court accusing the generals of the military high command of "abuse of authority" in forcibly exiling President Manuel Zelaya on June 28. Today lawyers for the generals requested that the court not issue arrest warrants for them since they would be willing to come before the court whenever it requests their presence. Rivera will have six days to review the filing and make a finding.
Posted by rns at 2:32 PM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: Supreme Court
De Facto Government Can't Make Payroll for January
The Finance Minister for the de facto government, Gabriela Nuñez announced today that she does not currently have access to sufficient funds to pay government employees for January. It all boils down to cash flow. She said she has access to about 400 million lempiras, and needs a total of about 1,500 million lempiras. In addition, she noted that the government has run up large debts with suppliers, including 450 million lempiras for medical supplies, and a further 700 million lempiras owed to road construction and paving contractors. She noted that the priority of the de facto government is to pay employees, and creditors will just have to wait. Nuñez expects that when the sales tax payments are received in mid-January, there might be enough for the government to pay its employees. Micheletti previously had assured us that they had sufficient funds to last through March.
Posted by rns at 2:03 PM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: Gabriela Nuñez
Government Silences Opposition Radio Station
Reporters Without Borders today stated their belief that it was the de facto government of Honduras that silenced the community radio station "Galuma Bimetu" (also known as Radio Coco Dulce) in Triunfo de la Cruz over the weekend. The Garifuna station was broken into, equipment removed, then the building was burned. Reporters Without Borders said "the punishment of the authors of this crime will constitute a test for the government to be inaugurated on January 27." The attack "confirms the consistent danger that the independent media, known for their opposition to the coup against Manuel Zelaya, are under." Reporters Without Borders did not discard the possibility that the station was attacked because of its opposition to the development project known as the "Bahia de Tela", a project which expropriated Garifuna community lands to build a multinational resort in Triunfo. However, they noted that the station has been subjected to previous attacks by the de facto government, including the arrest of the station director, Alfredo Lopez, in August for "being a member of the resistance against the coup."
Posted by rns at 12:33 PM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: Galuma Bimetu, Reporters Without Borders
Lopez Contreras: US Will Resume Aid
The Foreign Minister of the de facto government, Carlos Lopez Contreras, who yesterday assured us that the conversation between Craig Kelly and Roberto Micheletti did not touch on Micheletti resigning, today assures us that Kelly told Micheletti that US aid to Honduras would resume with the inauguration of Lobo Sosa, unconditionally. This contradicts the public statements of Lobo Sosa, who said that Kelly wanted Micheletti to resign by January 15 to facilitate the formation of a government of reconciliation, a requirement of the Tegucigalpa-San Jose Accord. Lopez Contreras said Micheletti's resignation was not discussed, and that the purpose of the meeting was for Kelly to tell Micheletti that the US would accept the results of the November election and resume aid to Honduras after Lobo Sosa's inauguration. Kelly left Honduras yesterday without making any public statements about his mission, or its results.

Today the US Embassy in Honduras put out a press release which reads in part:

"Mr. Kelly congratulated "Pepe" Lobo for his election and expressed the will of the United States to work with the new government of President Lobo to help confront the challenges once the Accord has been implemented....Mr. Kelly observed that the punctual implementation of the pending elements of the Accord are the best way to restore the position of Honduras with the international community."
Posted by rns at 8:58 AM 0 comments Links to this post
Labels: Craig Kelly, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, Roberto Micheletti, Tegucigalpa/San Jose Accord

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