Latin American church council says: Restore Honduras democracy

Published July 2, 2009

QuitoDemocracy should be restored in Honduras, says the head of the Latin American Council of Churches,   who has expressed deep concern about violence occurring in the Central American country.”We call for the restitution of peaceful democracy – that respects diversity and differences and seeks to solve conflicts by means of dialogue and respect for the will of the people,” said The Rev. Nilton Giese, general secretary of the Latin American Council of Churches on 30 June. “We are greatly concerned about the news that we hear about your country as a result of the military coup against the government of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales that has brought about an unconstitutional altering of the democratic order,” he said in a letter to regional churches and ecumenical groups. “The images near the Presidential House show us scenes of violent police control and of the Red Cross attending to the dozens of people affected, some of them with open wounds on their faces.”Media outlets reported that the military authorities have been enforcing strict censorship since the military coup on June 28.The Miami Herald newspaper quoted Honduras Channel 21 news anchor Indira Raudales making a plea: “We have a right to information! This can’t be happening in the 21st century!”The Latin American Council of Churches gathers together more than 170 churches and ecumenical organizations in 20 countries of Latin America and the Caribbean.”One of our objectives is that of promoting the unity of the people of God in Latin America, as an expression and sign of the contribution of the unity of the Latin American people,” the council said.The head of the church grouping of mainly Protestant churches in the region said, “It is our understanding that a return to constitutional order will only be possible with President Zelaya restored to his functions, a mandate that was granted him by the Honduran people.”On July 1, Jose Miguel Insulza, the general secretary of the Organization of American States, said the interim government in Honduras had 72 hours to reinstate democracy or face possible suspension from the OAS.


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