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Regional Organizations Speak Out Against Zelaya's Removal from Office

Just after 10:00 p.m. last night, the presidents of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) came together for an emergency meeting in Managua, Nicaragua, to discuss the military coup in Honduras. President Hugo Chávez assured the group that although the member states of ALBA will "do everything that we have to do" to bring President Zelaya back to Honduras and the presidency. This echoes the message from Washington, which has also called for “respect [of] the constitutional order.” The Venezuelan government clarified that it will not militarily intervene “because of the sacred respect for the sovereignty of Honduras."

The overall regional response has been one of solidarity with the ousted leader. The Rio Group, which includes 23 countries from the hemisphere, issued a statement condemning the coup and calling for Zelaya's "immediate and unconditional restoration to his duties." The foreign ministers of SICA (Central American Integration System) also held an emergency meeting and issued a statement strongly condemning the coup, stating that those in power are "against the constitutional and democratic government of President Manuel Zelaya.” The Organization of American States (OAS) called for the “immediate and unconditional return” of Zelaya to the presidency  and will convene a Special Session of the OAS General Assembly on Tuesday . The OAS could potentially suspend Honduras from the organization under the 2001 Inter-American Democratic Charter, which bans “the unconstitutional interruption of democratic order.”

For more information on the coup in Honduras, read Christopher Sabatini's June 29 blog post. The AS/COA has also published a resource guide to the evolving situation.

Any opinions expressed in this piece do not necessarily reflect those of Americas Quarterly or its publishers.
Tags: OAS, Honduras, ALBA, Manuel Zelaya, military coup, Rio Group, SICA

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