World leaders condemn the ouster of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya by army troops ahead of a controversial constitutional referendum on whether he could run for re-election. The Honduran Supreme Court says it ordered Zelaya's arrest.
Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya insisted from exile in Costa Rica Sunday that he remains the rightful leader of Honduras, hours after being deposed by his country's military.
Zelaya said he would attend a meeting of regional leaders to be held Monday in Nicaragua to assert his right to his country's leadership.
"Tomorrow, I will attend in the Summit of Central American presidents in Managua," he told reporters at the international airport in Costa Rica.
He was accompanied at the press conference by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, who has denounced Zelaya's ouster.
World leaders were quick to react to the news of Zelaya's ouster. Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez said if a new Honduran government is sworn in after the coup, "We will bring them down, we will bring them down, I tell you." He added: “I have put the armed forces of Venezuela on alert.”
Ecuador's foreign ministry said it "would not recognise any government” other than that of Zelaya. Argentina’s president, Cristina Kirchner, said the coup “reminds us of the worst years in Latin America's history".
US President Barack Obama said in a statement, "I call on all political and social actors in Honduras to respect democratic norms, the rule of law and the tenets of the Inter-American Democratic Charter."
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also condemned the move. "The action taken against Honduran President Manuel Zelaya violates the precepts of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, and thus should be condemned by all,” she said.
A French Foreign Ministry statement said that France “firmly condemns the coup that has just taken place in Honduras” and added that the reported arrests and expulsions of diplomatic envoys are a “grave breach” of the Vienna convention. “They are unacceptable,” it said.
Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has also strongly condemned what he called "the illegal detention and expulsion" of the country's president, demanding his "immediate" reinstatement.
The Honduran Supreme Court said that it had ordered Zelaya's arrest in a statement Sunday just hours after Zelaya was seized in a dawn raid by troops on his home and swiftly flown out of the country to neighboring Costa Rica.
"Today's events originate from a court order by a competent judge," the country's highest court said in a statement read by spokesman Danilo Izaguirre.
"The armed forces, in charge of supporting the constitution, acted to defend the state of law and have been forced to apply legal dispositions against those who have expressed themselves publicly and acted against the dispositions of the basic law," the court statement added.
Date created : 2009-06-28