Honduras calms following violence sparked by electoral uncertainty


Tegucigalpa (AFP)

Honduras experienced a moment of calm Saturday after a wave of violent clashes between Honduran authorities and opposition supporters claiming fraud in the country's presidential election shook the country.

One woman was left dead amid the riots, with the vote count at a standstill. The country's top electoral authority could not definitively name a winner.

Kimberly Dayana Fonseca, 19, was killed by military police in the Colonia Villanueva area east of the capital Tegucigalpa, according to her father Carlos Fonseca.

He told AFP that his daughter had left their house to search for an uncle who she thought was taking part in an opposition protest to warn him that authorities were about to begin a crackdown.

"Some of the military police came out of a bush, shooting like crazy and they shot her in the head," added Luisa, Kimberly's sister.

A spokesman from the public prosecutor's office told journalists it had launched an investigation, while the military police released a statement saying it was investigating "exhaustively" the possible role of one of its agents.

Opposition leader Salvador Nasralla, whose leftwing alliance has claimed victory in last week's vote, condemned the violence on Twitter.

At least 12 civilians have been wounded, some by gunfire, after violence erupted in several parts of the country sparked by Nasralla's call for his supporters to come onto the streets.

President Juan Orlando Hernandez -- seeking re-election despite a constitutional ban on a second term -- held a 1.5 percentage point lead over his rival with 94 percent of the vote counted, according to the latest figures from the Supreme Election Tribunal (TSE).

Nasralla along with former president Manuel Zelaya had demanded a review of more than 5,000 electoral records as well as "an audit of the entire system," which the TSE said could take 12 to 15 days.

TSE president David Matamoros had announced a review of 1,006 records, but then declared the postponement of that procedure to allow for an agreement between the agency, Nasralla and Zelaya.

Hernandez declared a state of emergency Friday night and imposed a 10-day curfew from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am.

Hernandez's conservative National Party -- which controls the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government -- contends that a 2015 Supreme Court ruling allows his re-election.

The opposition has denounced his bid, saying the court does not have the power to overrule the 1982 constitution.