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Honduras joins in Latin America-US row

Latest update : 2008-09-15

Following the expulsion of US envoys in Venezuela and Bolivia, Honduran President Manuel Zelaya on Friday postponed the reception of credentials of the new US ambassador in a show of solidarity with Bolivia.

 

TEGUCIGALPA - Honduras, a former U.S. ally in Central
America now run by a leftist government, told a U.S.
envoy not to present his credentials as ambassador on
Friday in a diplomatic snub in support of Bolivia.


 
President Manuel Zelaya said, however, that he did not want
to upset his country's relations with Washington.
 

Bolivia and anti-U.S. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez are
in a fight with Washington over what they see as U.S. support
for violent protests against Bolivian President Evo Morales.
 

Zelaya, who has moved Honduras closer to Chavez, was due to
receive a new U.S. ambassador on Friday in a ceremony at which
the envoy would present a letter with his diplomatic
credentials. But Zelaya temporarily put off the event in
support of Bolivia, a government source said.
 

"The government decided to temporarily suspend the
reception of the new ambassador's letter of credentials in
solidarity with Bolivian President Evo Morales," the source
said. The snub means envoy Hugo Llorens is not officially U.S.
ambassador.
 

The United States imposed sanctions on aides to Venezuela's
Chavez on Friday in retaliation for his expulsion of the U.S.
ambassador, escalating a crisis that raises the specter of a
possible oil supply cutoff.
 

Zelaya later told reporters his intention was to show
solidarity with Morales and he would receive the new U.S.
ambassador's credentials at a later date.
 

"In no way do we want to provoke a problem with the United
States," he said. "In no way are we breaking relations."
 

Bolivia and the United States expelled their respective
ambassadors earlier this week after Morales accused Washington
of supporting the opposition in the Andean country.
 

Violent anti-government protests have killed eight people
in Bolivia, where rightist governors have rebelled against the
popular president, demanding autonomy and rejecting his plans
to overhaul the constitution and break up ranches to give land
to poor Indians.

Date created : 2008-09-13

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