A long day in Honduras closes

James Wilde reports from Tegucigalpa, Honduras (Wednesday 23 September)

September 23, 2009
2 min read

A long day certainly closes. I have just finished monitoring all the stations broadcasting tonight.

On the positive tally, news editors were showing lots of ordinary people in poor barrios getting absolutely hammered by the police and army units. A lot of very angry, articulate gente – I am confident Mr Michelleti would no doubt dismiss as ‘thieves’ and’ scum’ telling it exactly as it happened.

There have been small scale riots in many parts of the city from Cerro Grande to Palmyrah and a lot of street clashes in San Pedro Sula. Quite a few reporters interviewed poor Hondurans trying to find an open pulperia to buy basic food items. In this respect the now 28-hour curfew has, I think, been a self-inflicted disaster by the junta.

People were frustrated and angry before with the dispute between the oligarchs but now they are hungry and quite ready to trade stones for the security forces tear gas, rubber bullets and the live rounds that the ridiculous secretariat minister says are impossible. Three dead people and 20 odd seriously injured at the Hospital Esquela rather eloquently refute the dissembling de facto minister.

On the negative tally, there is the soundbite parade of identikit ‘Dinosaur Junta’ representatives spouting truly astounding lies to a public wondering what they are going to feed the children tomorrow if they do not lift the Toque de Queda. A particularly sinister development is the use of the baseball stadium in the Villa Olympica to detain protesters. The media has assured viewers tonight that the Red Cross and human rights organisations have access to the detainees.

The only person connected to the resistance that I saw after a solid day of monitoring the domestic TV stations was Berta Oliva, apparently allowed some sort of access to the Brazilian Embassy in the late afternoon.

I am clinging to the news that Lula di Silva has requested that the UN Security Council debate Honduras as an urgent order of business. But since the US has a veto on agenda items, I am preparing not to be disappointed. Barry and Hilary probably do not wish to have their grandstanding at the Security Council interrupted by the backyard domestic dispute that they have worked so diligently to keep private.


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