Honduras: Zelaya Arrested and Removed as President

The day started across Honduras with news that President Mel Zelaya was arrested in his home by armed soldiers. A referendum vote was scheduled for the same day, which was one that was opposed by the Supreme Court, the Armed Forces and the Honduran legislature. Days earlier, Zelaya had removed the head of the Armed Forces, General Romeo Vásquez Velásquez, which was followed by the resignation by other top military officials because they would not support the vote.

It was soon learned that Zelaya had been taken to Costa Rica, where he continued to call himself as the legal head of state. There was also a rumor that Zelaya had resigned. However, the alleged letter turned out to be false notes Juan Carlos Rivera of Miradas de Halcón [es]. The reaction from the blogosphere and twittosphere ranged from calling the situation a coup d'état to those who saw the move as the only way to stop Zelaya's controversial move.

Photo by Roberto Brevé and used under a Creative Commons license. http://www.flickr.com/photos/breve/3668996322/

Photo by Roberto Brevé and used under a Creative Commons license. http://www.flickr.com/photos/breve/3668996322/

There have been power outages in the capital city, as reported by Honduras Daily News, which speculates that it is an “attempt to limit the passing of information.” However, information is currently being passed through social networking sites like Twitter and Blipea, which were very active throughout the day.

A supporter of Zelaya, Hibueras [es] wrote:

Manuel Zelaya fue detenido y sometido por la furza bruta de la jauria criminal de nuestra historia esclavista para evitar que el pueblo hondureño posea el poder de inclusion y de construccion de su patria, los responsables de tan ignomioso acto son todos conocidos y pagaran caro su abuso.

Llegó la hora de buscar por otros medios, lo que se nos niega por la paz, y los responsables seran jusgados por sus actos de traicion a la patria.

Manuel Zelaya was arrested and subjected to brute force by a criminal element that has enslaved the Honduran people, in order to prevent the people from obtaining power for the sake of inclusion and the construction of their homeland, those responsible for such a disgraceful act are well-known and they will pay for their abuses.

It is time to search by other means, those things which we are denied through peaceful means, and those responsible for their acts of treason will be judged.

Supporter of President Mel Zelaya by Roberto Brevé and used under a Creative Commons license. http://www.flickr.com/photos/breve/3668437385/

Supporter of President Mel Zelaya by Roberto Brevé and used under a Creative Commons license. http://www.flickr.com/photos/breve/3668437385/

Later in the day, Congress voted to remove Zelaya as president and installed Roberto Micheletti, who had been president of the legislative body. Soon after, he announced that new elections would be held as scheduled in November. However, the installation of Micheletti as acting president has drawn the criticism from many of Honduras’ closest allies, especially from Venezuela, who has threatened military action if any of its diplomats in Honduras are kidnapped or killed. In addition, President Hugo Chávez has said that the new government led by Micheletti would be defeated.

Some twitterers like Hugo Chinchilla is worried about the statements made by Chávez and take it as a sign that there may be involvement from these allies. He was told “unofficially” that the military is preparing for a possible intervention by Venezuelan and Nicaraguan troops [es].

There are others like Jorge Garcia, who is supporting the military new government and is urging his Twitter followers to provide support to soldiers with food and drink [es]. He also states:

En #honduras no hubo golpe de estado, el estado de derecho continúa, la constitución sigue vigente.

In #honduras there was no coup d'etat, the rule of law continues, the Constitution remains in effect.

Now that much of the world's attention is on Honduras, Wilmer Murillo is worried about being isolated by the international community. He pleads:

que devuelvan a Mel! estamos quedando como retrogradas ante los ojos del mundo.

Give back Mel! We are looking like a backward (country) in front of the eyes of the world.


  • You should add that all the Latin American Presidents from Uribe to Calderon support President Zelaya and the Organization of American States rejected the situation and called to reinstall the elected President. Also the European Union rejected the situation. The army injured diplomats and now restricted freedoms for 48 hours.

  • Everyone interested at the situation in Honduras should know:

    •That the honduran people has resisted stoically for over 3 years the governo of an individual that changed its mind at every tip creating confrontation between the institutions of the state.

    •That the honduran people had as president someone who considered Honduras as his particular state.

    •That his continued reject of the law has been the custom and not the exception.

    •That his intention its and have been to seek indefinite reelection trying to becoming a Chavez line dictator.

    •That the venerable Army of the Republic of Honduras did only the will of the law by removing Manuel Zelaya Rosales from the presidency.

    •That Honduras is only in a process of transition of powers as is written in the constitution of our Republic.

    •That several contries are trying to meddle into our soberanity by promising to send troops into our country to reinstate a fellow chavista to power

    Please help us to change the denomination that the international news networs give to this situation naming it a “Coup of Etat” when what is really going is a peaceful transition of power as is written by law and that will avoid Honduras to become another Chavez Filial.

    • pcburrows

      why does Obama and Clinton not support the Honduran peoples will to oust a president that seeks to change Honduran law that supports term limets, just as the U.S.A.
      The courts and the congress of Honduras called for Zelaya’s removal from office to restore democracy. Is that not what is in America’s, and all peoples best intrest??? What happened to Obamas high regard to the rule of law????

  • […] Twitterland , though, opinions split between those who wanted Zelaya out by any means and those who thought today’s arrest? coup? […]

  • Viva Honduras!

    This is a legal removal of a president whom is in violation of the Honduran Constitution.

    Zelaya’s actions of the past 5 months have been in blantant disregard for the Honduran Constituion, which he sought to rewrite, the Honduran Supreme Court, which he has undermined, the Honduran Congress, which he has tried to delegitimize,the Honduran Military, which he has tried to purge, his own party that has resisted Hug Chavez, and 72% of the Honduran public, that feel disenfranchised by Zelaya. This was not a coup. Zelaya was legally removed by the military at the request of the Honduran Congress and the Honduran Supreme Court that have the following two articles of the Honduran Constitution as the legal authority to do so;

    ARTICULO 239.- El ciudadano que haya desempeñado la titularidad del Poder Ejecutivo no podrá ser Presidente o Designado.
    El que quebrante esta disposición o proponga su reforma, así como aquellos que lo apoyen directa o indirectamente, cesarán de inmediato en el desempeño de sus respectivos cargos, y quedarán inhabilitados por diez años para el ejercicio de toda función pública.
    TRANSLATION – Article 239.- The citizen that has been the head of the Execute Branch cannot be President or Vice-President (again).
    Whoever violates this law or proposes its reform, as well as those that support such violation directly or indirectly, will immediately cease in their functions and will be unable to hold any public office for a period of 10 years.
    ARTICULO 205.- Corresponden al Congreso Nacional las atribuciones siguientes:

    15. Declarar si ha lugar o no a formación de causa contra el Presidente
    20. Aprobar o improbar la conducta administrativa del Poder Ejecutivo, Poder Judicial y ….
    TRANSLATION – Article 205 – Congress has the following authority:
    15 To indict the President
    20 To approve or disapprove of the administrative conduct of the Execurive Branch, …
    Why is Obama now meddling in the internal affairs of a soveriegn nation and why is he siding with Hugo Chavez against the nation of Honduras?

  • This is the most unbalanced article about Honduras that I have ever read on Global Voices, which generally just completely ignores Honduras as unimportant to the rest of the globe!

    Please do some more research and do not ignore all the other ‘VOICES’! Shame on Global Voices.

  • Maconald

    I am glad to hear some voices from Hondurans people, and please add more if available.

    The voice from outside world is also good, but I can read them from CNN. If you have any voice or opinion which disagree the mainstream media, you are free to add your own.

  • Sam Timpano

    Bravo Honduras!

    Do not let Obama, Chavez, Ortega or anyone concern you.

    Many of us who know what Zelaya (Chavez´s pawn and pupìl) was attempting and we are proud of you and your courage.

    Stay free! Stay proud!


  • Eduardo, I’m afraid you’re just repeating what the international media are saying. If you read the blogs from Honduras, you’ll get a much clearer picture.

    GVO is supposed to be the voice of the underdog! Where is that now?

    Aaron Ortiz

  • @Aaron

    Feel free to links to blogs in this comments section that should have been included when this post was written on Sunday night.

    I think “underdog” is a relative term, and perhaps many different sides think *they* are the underdog in this situation.

    We’d love to have you return as a contributing author and it would certainly add much more insight.

    • Thanks Eduardo, I never missed being a GV contributor as much as this week. I’ve been terribly caught up in this situation as I have family in Honduras, and friends on both sides of this issue.

  • For a much different viewpoint, see a series of articles and photos at


    and click the link in the upper right sidebar.

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