General strike in Honduras targets coup government

GRANMA INTERNATIONAL Havana. July 24, 2009

TEGUCIGALPA (PL).—The three principal labor unions in Honduras are maintaining a general strike in the state sector for the second day this Friday, supported by road blocks put in place by the popular forces repudiating the coup d’état.

The country remained paralyzed yesterday for several hours due to the closing of several strategic routes by demonstrators, workers leader Juan Barahona informed Prensa Latina.

Barahona, president of the United Workers Federation, described the first day of the strike as a success, taking into account the road blocks and occupation of various state institutions by workers.

The popular actions cut off the country’s principal ports on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, as well as highways connecting the capital with the northern part of the country.

Meanwhile, thousands of people began to move toward the Nicaraguan border. Constitutional President Manuel Zelaya affirmed yesterday that he is to return to his homeland overland from Nicaragua.

Many people called Radio Globo, a radio station that is keeping its microphones open for the people, to report that they had been victims of repression by the army forces who attempted to halt their movement.

In addition, a new problem has presented itself to the de facto government headed by the entrepreneur Roberto Micheletti: police discontent over delays in paying their wages, which has provoked a strike by some agents from a station in the capital.

Daniel Molina, an official police spokesman, tried to downplay the issue, assuring the press that it was merely related to administrative problems.

Nevertheless, officers interviewed by TV Channel 36 – the only station with a critical stance toward the June 28 coup – said that they will not attend to their duties until their complaints are resolved.

The problems arising in this repressive body, which includes the special Cobras squadron, comes in addition to the regime’s international isolation and the wave of popular condemnation that will completes its 27th day this Friday.

The leaders of the National Front against the Coup stated last night that the popular struggle will continue until the coup leaders are defeated and constitutional order and Zelaya are restored.

During the blocking of the northern exit of the Panamericana Highway in the capital yesterday, the crowd was urged over loudspeakers to leave in convoys for the border with Nicaragua to await Zelaya.

Translated by Granma International