This morning military personal kidnapped Honduran president Manuel Zelaya. According to one witness, 200 soldiers arrived at the president's house at 6am this morning, 4 shots were fired and later they left in vehicles towards the air base. The soldiers also took over the government television station, Channel 8, and took it off air. Zelaya is currently speaking live on Telsur TV, from Costa Rica.
In Venezuela, protests are starting in main city plazas and outside the Honduran Embassy. Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez spoke on Telsur earlier, with this statement, reported by the Bolivarian News Agency (ABN) and translated by Venezuelanalysis.com.
The president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez Frias, manifested his rejection, this Sunday, of the kidnapping of the president of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya, by that nation's military, and said that North American imperialism and the extreme right are behind this act.
"It's a brutal coup d'etat, one of many that happened over 10 years in Latin America. Behind these soldiers are the Honduran bourgeois, the rich who converted Honduras into a Banana Republic, into a political and military base for North American imperialism," said the Venezuelan head of state.
In telephone contact with the television channel Telesur, President Chavez urged the North American president [Barack Obama] to declare his opinion on the subject and said he considers the abuse against Honduras as being against all the peoples of Latin America.
Chavez said that from different mechanisms of regional integration, the Latin American people have started to mobilize, and he indicated that this coup will be defeated in order to return dignity to [Honduras].
"We say to the coup plotters, we are standing up. Honduras is not alone," Chavez said.
He also urged the Honduran soldiers who "acted in a cowardly way" to retake the constitutional thread and return the legally and democratically elected President [Zelaya] to his duties.
"Soldier, empty out your riffle against the oligarchy and not against the people," he said, adding, "These solders are going to know what the people are when the people start to go out into the streets."