Honduras regime falsifies elections, kills protesters

This video from the USA says about itself:

Honduras Election: One of the Worst Cases of Fraud in Recent Memory

1 December 2017

Evidence is mounting that the Honduran presidential election is being stolen so that the conservative incumbent, President Juan Orlando Hernandez, remains in office. According to CEPR‘s Mark Weisbrot, this is one of the worst cases of fraud in recent memory, but this is the outcome the Trump administration is hoping for.

By Heather Gies today:

Honduras army, police in crackdown on election unrest

Tegucigalpa – Honduras has descended deeper into crisis on Friday night as the government declared a 10-day curfew and empowered police and military to crack down on unrest that has erupted over the five-day delay in official election results being released.

The curfew, which began at 11:00pm local time, suspends the right to free movement from 6:00pm to 6:00am and directs security forces to detain anyone violating the curfew or who is “in some way suspected of causing damage to people or their property”.

The executive decree also orders the military to support the police in maintaining order, including removing road blockades and other occupations that protesters have set up throughout the capital city and across the country to pressure electoral authorities to release honest results in an increasingly contested presidential election.

President Juan Orlando Hernandez, who is seeking re-election, said the curfew was imposed to “safeguard security” after heated protests spilled over into looting on Friday.

Hernandez’ opponent, Opposition Alliance candidate Salvador Nasralla, claimed that looting was the result of infiltrators and “government operations” designed to sew panic and chaos and justify a military crackdown and curfew.

He also suggested the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) will use the shield of the curfew to announce Hernandez as president-elect with limitations on peoples’ ability to protests the results.

Imposition of the nationwide military curfew brought back memories of the 2009 US-backed military coup that overthrew President Manuel Zelaya, who now supports Nasralla and is coordinator of the Opposition Alliance.

De facto President Roberto Micheletti immediately decreed a curfew on June 28, 2009, and subsequent curfews, enforced by police an military, were sporadically imposed throughout the summer and autumn of 2009.

Honduras suffered a grave deterioration in human rights, including disproportionate use of force by security forces and targeted killings of political activists and human rights defenders.

Coup backers justified Zelaya’s removal with flawed claims he was seeking presidential re-election, which is prohibited by the Constitution. Hernandez, who supported the coup, justifies his bid for a second term in office using a contested 2015 court ruling overturning the constitutional ban that his critics say was illegal. …

Amid the unrest in recent days, riot police have fired tear gas to disperse protesters and military police have reportedly shot live bullets at protesters.

At least one person has been killed in protests in La Ceiba, according to police, and one person in Tegucigalpa, according to the human rights organisation COFADEH.

“Declaring who is the winner and who is the loser won’t resolve the problem because the crisis is installed,” COFADEH coordinator Bertha Oliva told Al Jazeera hours before the announcement of the curfew.

“Impunity and militarisation are established in the country and there are no immediate proposals to assume shared responsibility for a new social pact,” Oliva said, adding: “We are in the worst crisis the government could put us in.”

Still no results

Unrest has escalated since Wednesday night, when thousands of people took to the streets after Hernandez eclipsed Nasralla in the TSE partial official results following an hours-long silence due to technical problems.

The shift in the results contradicted what TSE magistrate Ramiro Lobo on Monday had called an “irreversible” trend towards Nasralla’s victory. On Thursday, Lobo raised concerns about the TSE’s technical issues and called for the situation to be investigated.

The TSE’s slow delivery of results from Sunday’s election and a sudden change in the direction of results in favour of Hernandez after the first report of results – which showed a 5 percent lead for Nasralla with over half of ballots counted – has stirred suspicions of manipulations and fraud.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain today:

Three people have been killed while protesting against the suspected manipulation and dozens more have been hurt.

Mr Nasralla is supported by former president Manuel Zelaya, who was ousted in 2009 in a US-backed coup when the country’s wealthy elites took fright at him tacking leftwards.

Mr Nasralla has seen a substantial five-point lead over right-wing incumbent Juan Orlando Hernandez evaporate as the vote counting has dragged on all week.

Mr Hernandez now supposedly has a lead of 46,000, but few credit this as an accurate account of the vote. The UN human rights office and both regional and EU observers have all criticised the electoral tribunal’s conduct. …

Tooled-up riot police have been deployed, armed with tear gas, truncheons, rubber-coated steel baton rounds and water cannon.

Miguel Osorio, a spokesman for the University School Hospital in Tegucigalpa, said yesterday that doctors there had treated 10 people for gunshot wounds since the protests began.

There was a serious increase in internal repression following the 2009 coup, with many activists murdered.

It appears that a police crackdown on opposition supporters is already under way. Foreign journalists have reported being beaten up by police while covering protests by Mr Nasralla’s supporters.

17 thoughts on “Honduras regime falsifies elections, kills protesters

  1. Saturday 2nd December 2017

    posted by Morning Star in Editorial

    IMAGINE the howls of rage from Washington and its regional hirelings if an election in Venezuela had been marked by similar skulduggery to the deplorable fraud perpetrated in Honduras.

    Incumbent President Juan Orlando Hernandez was paraded as the favourite before polling began, but early results indicated a clear lead for his anti-corruption challenger Salvador Nasralla of the Libre party.

    What happened next was unbelievable — the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) simply stopped releasing running results, leaving the contest dangling with Nasralla holding a 5 per cent advantage.

    Things moved rapidly, with armoured military columns rolling towards the capital Tegucigalpa as the electoral authorities claimed to have discovered a malfunction of their computers but put the count back on track.

    As if by magic, Nasralla’s lead was reduced and then reversed while Hernandez supporters engaged in intimidatory “victory” celebrations even while their candidate remained officially in second place.

    It emerged that, during the supposed TSE computer shutdown, security mechanisms linked to the data transmission system had been removed and unvalidated ballot papers were being counted.

    Who could dispute Nasralla’s assertion that the presidential election was being stolen by ballot-rigging connived at by TSE president David Matamoros?

    Matamoros denies wrongdoing, but, in the immortal words of Mandy Rice-Davies: “He would, wouldn’t he?”

    He deplores street violence that has followed his tribunal’s jiggery-pokery and expects his announcement of the election result to be regarded as the final word on the matter.

    If it was up to the US State Department and its puppet Luis Almagro, secretary general of the Organisation of American States, Matamoros’s wish would be granted.

    The Honduran people were given the democratic right to elect their president but let themselves down by backing the wrong candidate, so the election authorities, backed up by the military top brass, have corrected their mistake — it’s the Latin American way in Washington’s backyard.

    Wrong! That’s the way things used to play out when US ambassadors behaved like Roman consuls in the region, secure in the knowledge that national armies, led by officers trained in the US School of the Americas, would “restore order” if people misused their ballot papers.

    Cuban revolutionary leaders called their island the “first free country of the Americas” after they put an end to such anti-democratic and corrupt practices with their people’s liberation in 1959.

    Recent years have witnessed other uprisings in class and national consciousness, especially since the Bolivarian revolution, led by Hugo Chavez, in Venezuela.

    Those rising up understand that the imperialist enemy will stop at nothing to return to the days of US hegemony throughout the region, whether through economic pressure, financial corruption, ballot-rigging or, in the last resort, military coups.

    The Honduran people have seen their dreams of democracy dashed before — in 2009, their president Manuel Zelaya, elected just three years earlier, was overthrown by the military and deported to Costa Rica.

    US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — remember her, the “progressive” alternative to Donald Trump? — condoned the coup, revealing the shallowness of Washington’s heralded commitment to democracy.

    President Trump will be no different from Clinton and will throw his weight around to persuade peoples and governments in the region, including US citizens, to accept this fraudulent seizure of power.

    Hondurans will resist and be supported by friends and neighbours. We must insist that the British government too rejects this self-evident electoral coup.



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