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Honduras suspends civil liberties amid calls for 'rebellion'
|Last Edited||kal Sep 28, 2009 04:21pm|
|Media||Newspaper - Guardian|
|News Date||Monday, September 28, 2009 10:20:00 PM UTC0:0|
Honduras's interim leaders suspended key civil liberties last night in response to "calls for insurrection" by ousted president Manuel Zelaya, empowering police and soldiers to break up "unauthorised" public meetings, arrest people without warrants and restrict the news media.
The announcement came just hours after Zelaya called on supporters to stage mass marches today to mark the three-month anniversary of the 28 June coup that ousted him. Zelaya described the marches as "the final offensive" against the interim government.
Zelaya, who surprised the world when he sneaked back into the country last Monday and holed up in the Brazilian embassy, is demanding he be reinstated to office, and has said that the government of interim president Roberto Micheletti "has to fall".
The government announced the decree in a nationwide broadcast, saying it was "to guarantee peace and public order in the country and due to the calls for insurrection that Mr Zelaya has publicly made".
The measure empowers police and soldiers to arrest without a warrant "any person who poses a danger to his own life or those of others", although unlike martial law, it requires that anyone arrested be turned over to civilian prosecutors.
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