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Updated 06/03/2010

Honduras News in Review—May 2010, part 2

15. Resistance: we will have political arm 

On May 22, President Lobo said in a press conference that he supported the FNRP becoming a political party and offered his help in getting it properly registered. In response, resistance leader Rafael Alegría confirmed that the popular movement would have a political arm to participate in future elections. But first, he said, "we need to democratize the electoral system, and all the institutions dealing with democracy, citizen involvement and security." He added, "For now, we need to focus on the Consulta [public referendum on convening a constitutional assembly] and gathering signatures." Alegría also noted that the president's recognition gives the constitutional assembly and a change to the constitution more momentum.

16. Lobo statements support Zelaya return

In a CNN interview while in Spain on May 21, President Lobo admitted that the events of June 28 constituted a coup, and that he’d been in touch with former President Zelaya saying the same. In his efforts to try to sow the seeds for national reconciliation, Lobo has also put forth a plan to fly to the Dominican Republic and personally return with Zelaya to prove the ousted president wouldn’t be arrested or killed, as some say would happen. Lobo was reportedly in secret meetings with the Supreme Court and the Armed Forces Joint Chiefs of Staff to negotiate Zelaya’s return.

17. Llorens says minority of Hondurans "opposed to reconciliation"

U.S. Ambassador to Honduras Hugo Llorens said this week that minority groups on the extreme left and right are obstructing the "national reconciliation" that President Lobo is trying to advance. Llorens said these small groups are "not doing anything for the good of the country" and do not reflect the perspective of the majority of Hondurans.

18. Colombian police to train Hondurans on fighting drug trafficking and organized crime

On May 24, President Porfirio Lobo traveled to Columbia to sign an agreement with Colombian President Álvaro Uribe to have Colombian police train their Honduran counterparts on dealing with drug trafficking, kidnapping, security and human rights issues. The Bogotá meeting is a follow-up to a February agreement between the countries to collaborate on the issue of organized crime.

19. Former coup president dies

Former Honduran President Oswaldo Lopez Arellano, who led two government takeovers (1963 and 1972) in Honduras, died this month after being hospitalized for prostate cancer. The Honduran government declared three days of mourning and called his death "an irreparable loss to the Honduran society." An estimated 3,000 people died in the 1963 coup.