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Issue #1430      30 September 2009

Statement by the Secretariat of the CPA

On the Situation in Honduras

The Communist Party of Australia strongly condemns the recent barbaric repression of the people of Honduras and the intimidation and attacks on the Brazilian Embassy in Tegucigalpa.

Manuel Zelaya, the legitimate president of Honduras was ousted from his post by a military coup on Sunday June 28. Despite worldwide condemnation of this right-wing action even by the US, the coup leaders have defied the world and hung onto to power.

The de facto regime led by Roberto Micheletti has been the target of constant and growing demonstrations organised by the resistance of the people who call for Micheletti to step down and allow the legitimate president Zelaya to return to power.

Diplomatic pressures have not worked on the illegal regime so the legitimate president of Honduras returned to his country some days ago, taking up residence in the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa.

With shades of the military coup by Pinochet in Chile in 1973 demonstrators have been rounded up and placed in sporting stadiums around the capital. Further worrying reports have surfaced of President Zelaya and over 300 supporters being isolated in the Brazilian embassy with basic services of food, water and electricity being cut off. Live ammunition, teargas and rubber bullets have been regularly fired at the demonstrators. The situation is grave and the prospect of more deaths on top of the three already confirmed is high.

At the beginning of 2009 the prospect of military coups and dictatorships seemed remote yet this old mechanism of control has been used again against one of the democratic and progressive governments in Latin America.

The CPA demands that:

  • The Australian government speak up against the coup in Honduras. We call on the Foreign Minister to issue a condemnation of the coup and call for the restoration of democracy and the return of Manuel Zelaya to power.
  • The Australian government cease all contact with the illegal Micheletti regime including AusAid, the Australian Leadership Awards Fellowships some of which go to Honduras, and any military cooperation.
  • We call on the Australian media to report developments in this country rather than ignoring this very tragic event and giving solace to the perpetrators of oppression.
  • We call on all Australians to condemn the military coup in Honduras and to pressure both Australian politicians and the US president to force the illegal regime of Micheletti from office.
  • We commend the actions of AFL-CIO, US Steelworkers and Local 10 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union who have led the way in calling for the restoration of Zelaya and constitutional order in Honduras. We call on Australian unions to follow the example of their US colleagues.
  • We call on all left and progressive forces here and around the world to work together in building a massive solidarity movement with the Honduran people.

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