Honduran Supreme Court Denies Zelaya’s Return
Manuel Zelaya was removed from office on June 28, during a military coup that aimed to protect the observance of the Honduran national constitution. Zelaya, democratically elected in 2006, had intended to hold a referendum in order to extend his nonrenewable four-year term.
As the BBC explains, Costa Rican president Oscar Arias proposed to reinstate Zelaya as president as a means to
end the political crisis in Honduras
. His proposed deal also suggested “return[ing Micheletti] to his pre-coup post as the speaker of Honduras’ parliament” and to organize an early election.
The Supreme Court, however, did not approve of Zelaya’s potential return to the Honduran presidency, and declared that the ex-president will be charged with “crimes against the government, treason against the nation, abuse of power” and other offences if he chose to return to Honduras, AFP reports. Since the military coup that removed him from power on June 28, Zelaya has
symbolically stepped across the border
from Nicaragua back into Honduras, taunting authorities and conveying his unwillingness to give up the fight.
As the BBC explains, the Honduran Supreme Court’s decision has also come to “affir[m] the legitimacy of the government of interim leader Roberto Micheletti,” who stepped into power after the military coup and had not been officially recognized. According to the Supreme Court, Micheletti’s government is an acceptable “constitutional succession” after Zelaya’s removal, and should remain in place until the presidential elections in November, AFT reports.
The BBC notes, furthermore, that the ruling came to pass shortly before a scheduled visit by a commission from the Organisation of American States (OAS), which had previously expressed their support for the deal proposed by Costa Rica. In the light of the new developments, it is unclear whether this visit will still occur.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.