"We call upon all parties to refrain from acts of violence and to seek a peaceful, constitutional, and lasting solution to the serious divisions in Honduras through dialogue. To that end, we have been working with a number of our partners in the hemisphere to create a negotiation, a dialogue that could lead to a peaceful resolution of this situation."Secretary Clinton announced that Costa Rican President Óscar Arias was designated to mediate talks, beginning on Thursday, to resolve Honduras's political crisis. Both sides in the dispute had agreed to work with Mr. Arias. Mr. Arias was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1987 for brokering an end to civil wars in El Salvador and Nicaragua and the Secretary called him "the natural person to assume this role."
Honduras's acting president, Roberto Micheletti, applauded the designation of Mr. Arias by saying, "We are open to dialogue."
During the Q&A, the Secretary touched on a lot of important issues including one I found to not only be very important, but clearly showed a new way of thinking at the State level for the United States:
"It has been my view for several days that the most useful role we could play is to convince all that are directly concerned, not only President Zelaya, but also the de facto regime, the OAS, the UN, everyone, that we needed to have a process where the Hondurans themselves sat down and talked to each other. And that is – that’s been my goal, and I believe that we are on the brink of that happening. I’m hoping that it actually occurs soon.
So we have tried through our good offices to get people to this point. And we’re very grateful for the willingness of President Arias to serve in this position, and we’re also appreciative of the efforts of the OAS as well."
Although things may look like they are under control here in the U.S., passions were still running high in Honduras today. Both supporters and non-supporters of Zelaya held protests and demonstrations in Tegucigalpa.
In the photo above you can see Mr. Zelaya's wife (bottom, giving the thumbs up) marching with thousands of demonstrators who carried a simulated red-splattered shroud symbolizing the protester killed Sunday. Read the Secretary's full remarks to the press here or watch below:
P.S.- Love the Official State Department Sling. That Hillary is always thinkin'!