CARACAS, Friday July 10, 2009 | Update
Former US Assistant Secretary of State Otto Reich questioned on Friday the claims that the events in Honduras are a coup d'état. He warned that future events in the Central American country could be considered as a "green light" for the "expansion of Chavist authoritarianism" in the region.
"What happens in Honduras could be seen one day as the main attempt of Hugo Chávez to undermine democracy in this hemisphere, or as a green light to the continued expansion of Chavist authoritarianism under the guise of democracy," Reich said in a hearing before the Foreign Relations Committee of Congress which discussed on Friday the situation in Honduras.
"How can the so-called democratic community allow Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia and other countries that have either destroyed their own governments or are in the process of doing so, determine the standards of democracy in the region?" asked the Conservative Cuban-US politician, former assistant secretary of State for Latin American under the administration of George W. Bush and former member of the controversial School of the Americas, DPA reported.
Previously, in an article published in the newspaper "El Nuevo Herald" in Miami, Reich rejected having "orchestrated" the coup in Honduras, in response to public accusations by the Venezuelan ambassador to the Organization of American States, Roy Chaderton.
"Had I really been the ''architect'' of Zelaya's removal, I would have advised that he be charged with the almost 20 crimes with which the Honduran Judiciary has now charged him, and be arrested by civilian authorities. I would have urged that the constitutional process be followed," Reich said in the editorial article. The former top US diplomat also said that the current de facto government of Roberto Micheletti is legal and constitutional, according to Honduras laws.
10:07 AM. DIPLOMACY. Admired by the Colombian guerrilla after his coup attempt in 1992, the then lieutenant colonel Hugo Chávez Frías received financial support by the Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC) for his projects after his capture that year. This mostly explains the relationship and "debt" between the parties, as revealed by a paper of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) of the United Kingdom.