Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Honduras coup, Act III, Day 29

Posted by Charles II on August 21, 2009

Update: Robert Naiman, HuffPo (via

On Friday nearly 100 Latin America scholars and experts sent an open letter to Human Rights Watch urging HRW to speak up about human rights violations in Honduras under the coup regime and to conduct its own investigation of these abuses….The Latin America experts note that if Human Rights Watch took action to shine its spotlight on these abuses, it would be more likely that the Obama Administration would put greater pressure on the coup regime to end these abuses and restore democracy….Human Rights Watch is formally independent of the U.S. government, but its reporting on Latin America is often heavily influenced by the agendas of official Washington.

Nell links us to an interview in which Carlos Reina, co-ordinator of Liberals Opposed to the Coup, says that there is an effort to get the OAS on record against legitimating any election. He says that the National Party is unified in favor of the coup. The Liberal Party is 70% in support of Zelaya, while the top leadership is in charge of the coup. There are about 50,000 people running small and mid-size businesses. They’re afraid to speak out, but generally don’t support the coup. Two hundred soldiers and officers are held captive because they won’t join the repression. The people want to dissolve the military.

Reporters Without Borders, normally incredibly slow to notice human rights violations, has protested the violence.

Lula asked Obama to amp up the pressure on the coup. He also wants written guarantees that the Colombian bases will not support operations outside of Colombia. Good luck on that one.
Our State Department, August 18th:

QUESTION: Do you have any update on the meeting today with the delegation from Honduras with, I think, Assistant Secretary of State Craig Kelly?

MR. [IAN] KELLY: Yeah. Craig Kelly is the Acting Assistant Secretary of State. There is — there is a delegation representing the de facto regime, which is in Washington today. They have meetings at the headquarters of the Organization of American States. The primary purpose, as I understand it, for this trip is for them to prepare the ground for a trip that’s being planned of a commission – I believe the foreign ministers from the OAS – that’s going to be going soon to Honduras.

Within the context of those meetings, there’s going to be a group of State Department officials who are going to meet with them again, within the context of trying to move this situation that we have towards a peaceful resolution, towards restoration of democratic and constitutional power in Honduras. So it’s within that context that State Department colleagues are going to be meeting with this group. But it in no way – I’d like to emphasize this in no way is meant to imply any kind of acceptance of the de facto regime in Tegucigalpa.

QUESTION: And it’s going – sorry.

MR. KELLY: Yeah, go ahead. You had a follow up?

QUESTION: It’s going to be for the Arias process?

MR. KELLY: Yes. Yeah.

QUESTION: Nothing –

MR. KELLY: It’s within that context, yeah.

Eighteen of 24 people accused of participating in violence in recent demonstrations were released by judge Esteban Quevedo, according to La Prensa. The other six look to be sentenced to probation. La Prensa’s arithmetic gets confusing as they say that there are 7 people who were sentenced, but I presume this is because the seventh is a Colombian. They were acquitted of charges of robbery, wounding, and sedition and convicted on demonstrating illegally. This is not a very good record for the police.

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