Full text translation to English of the Statement of President Manuel Zelaya, issued July 4
July 04, 2009 “Information Clearing House”
Compañeros and compañeras, fellow Hondurans, your president, Manuel Zelaya Rosales, speaks to you. I want to tell you that my destiny is tied to the destiny of the Honduran people. On the morning of June 28, while I was preparing to exercise my vote in a nationwide survey, I was the victim of assaults, abuses, violations and kidnapping, I was taken captive and expelled from my country by Honduran military forces. By these military forces that today have put themselves in the service of and in complicity with the voracious elite that squeezes and asphyxiates our people, obeying their orders and not defending our nation or our democracy. This is a blow to the Honduran nation and has made clear to the world that in Honduras there is still a kind of barbarity, and people who are unaware of the harm they cause to our country and to future generations.
Through these means of communication, I call for you to continue the participation of the people. The people are the principle actors of our democracy and of the solutions that must be found to the grave problems of poverty and inequality in our country.
As Hondurans, we have faced major problems and we have always know how to come together to move forward, and this is a huge opportunity to show the world that Hondurans are capable of confronting these problems in spite of the attacks by a criminal sector that today seeks to appropriate the fate of our nation and of our children.
I speak to the coup leaders, traitors, Judases that kissed me on the cheek to then carry out this major strike against our country and democracy: You must rectify your actions as soon as possible. You are surrounded, the world has isolated you, all the nations of the world have condemned you, without exception. There is general repudiation of your actions, your actions will not be ignored because international tribunals will hold you accountable for the genocide you are carrying out in our country by repressing basic freedoms and by repressing our people.
I am organizing my return to Honduras and I ask all campesinos, housewives, city-dwellers, indigenous peoples, youth and all the groups of workers, businesspeople and politicians that I have throughout the nation–mayors, legislators–that you accompany me on my return to Honduras. This is the return of the elected president, elected by the sovereign will of the people, which is the only form of electing presidents in Honduras. Let us not lose our rights and not permit that certain individuals begin to make decisions that should be made by the Honduran people, through their legitimacy and their popular will.
I am willing to make any effort and sacrifice to obtain the freedom that our country needs. We will either be free or we will be permanent slaves unless we have the courage to defend ourselves. Do not take arms, practice what I have always taught– non-violence. Let them be the ones who bring violence, arms and repression. Make the coup responsible for every life of every person, for the physical integrity and dignity of the Honduran people.
We are going to arrive in the International Airport of Honduras in Tegucigalpa with several presidents and members of the international community. On Sunday we will be in Tegucigalpa, we will be accompanying you and embracing you to defend what we have always defended, which is the will of God through the will of the people.
Greetings fellow countrymen and women, may God protect you and bless you all.