Page last updated at 07:09 GMT, Sunday, 26 July 2009 08:09 UK

Zelaya returns to Honduras border


Zelaya came back to the Honduran border but did not cross it

Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya has returned to the country's border with Nicaragua for the second day running, demanding to be allowed home.

He says he will set up camp on the Nicaraguan side to keep up pressure on the interim Honduran government.

Speaking into a megaphone, he demanded to be allowed to see his family, who he has not seen since last month's coup.

On Friday, he made a symbolic crossing over the border into Honduras but withdrew minutes later.

The US, which opposed Mr Zelaya's dismissal and expulsion last month, has described his current attempts to return home as "reckless".

Interim Honduran President Roberto Micheletti dismissed Friday's brief return as a publicity stunt, saying Mr Zelaya's action was "ill-conceived and silly".

The country's interior minister said that if the ousted president had dared go any further, he would have been arrested.

Meanwhile, the Honduran armed forces have indicated they would not oppose a deal to restore Mr Zelaya to the presidency with limited powers, the New York Times reports.


During Saturday's return to the frontier, the cowboy-hatted exiled president vowed to wait near the border.

Relief map of the Nicaragua and Honduras border

"Today we are going to set up camps here, with water and food. We are going to stay here this afternoon, tonight and tomorrow morning," he told a crowd of 150 supporters.

But he said he would not attempt another crossing for fear of soldiers attacking his supporters, the Associated Press news agency reports.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton criticised Mr Zelaya's action, calling it "reckless" and "not conducive to the broader effort to restore constitutional order".

Much of southern Honduras has been paralysed by the crisis, the BBC's Stephen Gibbs says from Honduras.

A curfew remains in place day and night. Supporters of Mr Zelaya, describing themselves as a resistance movement, have blocked main roads, our correspondent says.

Anti-Zelaya supportes protested about his planned return
Anti-Zelaya supporters protested about his planned return

Dozens of trucks have been parked for several days in the approaches to the border, unable to make the crossing.

And there is no sign as to when, or how, this will all end, our correspondent adds.

Mr Zelaya has been in exile since 28 June when a coup forced him from power.

The government which replaced him says he was attempting to stay in power indefinitely.

He insists he remains the democratically-elected leader of Honduras.

The talks in Costa Rica aimed at resolving the political crisis broke up last week with no agreement between the two sides.

Print Sponsor

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific