Besieged in Embassy Zelaya Extols Brazil’s Moral and Political Stature

Zelaya surrounded by the military in Brazilian embassy Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva didn't know a thing about deposed Honduran president Manuel Zelaya's decision to return to Honduras, according to Zelaya himself talking in the building of the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa where the ousted leader has been sheltered for more than a week now.

Zelaya also claimed that followers calling for his reinstatement have been viciously beaten up by police in Tegucigalpa, according to reports in the Brazilian press.

"Not president Lula or Marco Aurélio (Garcia, advisor to Lula) or Celso Amorim (Brazilian Foreign minister) knew beforehand about my return to Tegucigalpa," said Zelaya from the Brazilian embassy where he has holed in since September 21.

"When I arrived in Honduras I had several options where to take refuge, but I chose Brazil; I spoke with Amorim and told him I wanted to attempt a dialogue from the embassy and also because of security reasons since I feared reprisals or been sacrificed by the regime (of de facto president Roberto Micheletti)," said Zelaya.

Amorim revealed before the Brazilian Congress that Zelaya had in effect requested Brazil supply an aircraft for his return to Honduras, but he personally denied it. The argument used by the fallen leader was that OAS Secretary General, Jose Miguel Insulza, had been supplied with a Brazilian aircraft for his trips to Honduras.

Brazilian senators are highly suspicious that Lula knew all about Zelaya's return beforehand, and summoned Amorim to the Foreign Relations committee to give his version of the facts.

Zelaya also stated that marches in favor of his reinstatement and the return of democracy are "very active and taking place all over the country," but repression is violent and fierce, "there's a state of ungovernability."

"I think Honduras should not live under a state of convulsion, unless we want to become an Afghanistan," said the ousted leader. "Latin America does not deserve what is happening, nor do the people of Honduras."

Zelaya revealed that all communications and cellular phones in the embassy have been cut off by what he calls Honduras illegitimate authorities, "but we are resisting with stoicism, patience, because above all is democracy which must be reinstated."

He then went on to praise Lula. "His government has shown its commitment to democracy having accepted a national dialogue from the embassy in Tegucigalpa."

"This is another evidence of the continental moral and political stature of Brazil," he added. "Redressing the coup in Honduras will be a vaccine against all coups in all Latin American countries, including Brazil. We're rewriting history next to Brazil," concluded Zelaya.



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