Monday, July 06, 2009

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to meet ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya this week

According to U.S. officials, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton plans to meet the ousted Honduran President, Manuel Zelaya, sometime this week. If so, this would be the highest-level contact the Obama administration has had with Zelaya since he was deposed last week.

Zelaya is expected in Washington D.C. tomorrow, Tuesday. This follows an unsuccessful attempt to return to Honduras on Saturday that deepened the country's political crisis, creating a clash between Zelaya's supporters and the government.

The State Department says the administration remains committed to seeing a restoration of democratic order in Honduras and deplored the use of force against Zelaya's supporters.

Although there are many reports out on this meeting between Secretary Clinton and President Zelaya, today at the State Department briefing with Ian Kelly, he would not give out ANY details.

When asked if the Administration has any plans to meet Zelaya at a senior level he answered: "We haven’t made any set plans, but I’m sure we will meet with him at a senior level, but there’s no definite plans yet... I’m not prepared to give you sort of definite information on that yet."

Although he did reiterate the U.S. call for Zelaya to be restored to power saying: "Our goal remains the restoration of the democratic order in Honduras, and we renew our call on all political and social actors in Honduras to find a peaceful solution to this crisis."

Asked what restoring the democratic order meant, Kelly replied: "it means the return of the democratically elected president to Tegucigalpa, the return of Mel Zelaya."

Watch the full press briefing with Ian Kelly below:

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