Honduras is facing increasing international isolation, a day after a plane carrying the ousted President was blocked from bringing Manuel Zelaya back to the country.
The regime that threw him out last week deployed troops and military vehicles on the runway to prevent the jet touching down. Some reports say two people were killed as soldiers held back Zelaya supporters at the airport’s perimeter. Since troops forced the left winger out of Tegucigalpa in his night clothes, he has taken refuge in El Salvador. There was a show of solidarity from the Presidents of Argentina, Ecuador and Paraguay who flew to El Salvador to monitor Zelaya’s aborted homecoming attempt. From San Salvador Zelaya said: “In the name of God, soldiers of Honduras, policemen, in the name of God, I ask you, I beg you and I command you: do not repress the Honduran people any longer.” No country has yet recognised the interim government in Honduras – but the new regime has remained defiant saying Zelaya’s departure was a constitutional transition – and not a coup d’etat. Zelaya has promised to make more attempts to return to the country where he still considers himself President.