[This action alert comes from the Alliance for Global Justice]
Representatives James McGovern (D-MA) and Bill Delahunt (D-MA) have sent out a Dear Colleague letter to the other members of the House of Representatives asking them to sign on as original co- sponsors to a House resolution calling for the reinstatement of Manuel Zelaya as president of Honduras. See text of the letter and of the House resolution below.
Call your Representative and ask him or her to sign on! The Capitol Switchboard number is: 202-224- 3121. All original co-sponsors need to be added before 5pm today. Here is some suggested language for your call:
“Please tell Representative _________________ that I urge him to be an original co-sponsor of the McGovern/Delahunt resolution to oppose the military led coup in Honduras. The resolution calls for the reinstatement of democracy in that country. Please contact Cliff Stammerman or Ben Dailey in Delahunt’s office before close of business today as that will be the closing of original cosponsors.”
Become an original co-sponsor of a resolution opposing the coup d’état in Honduras
Deadline is close of business Thursday, July 9, 2009
We ask you to join us in co-sponsoring the resolution below condemning the coup d’état in Honduras, demanding that Honduran President Manuel Zelaya be returned to office, and welcoming the mediation efforts of Costa Rican President Oscar Arias.
As you are no doubt aware, an internal political dispute in Honduras degenerated into a coup d’état on June 28, 2009, in which the democratically-elected President of Honduras was seized by the Honduran military and sent into exile. This move was swiftly condemned by the United States, the Organization of American States, the European Union, and the United Nations, all of whom have demanded that President Zelaya be reinstated to office.
It is critical that Congress be crystal clear that coups are unacceptable. This is particularly important in Latin America, a region which has suffered greatly in the past from military interference in politics but over the last 30 years has generally moved towards democracy. To accept the overthrow of a democratically-elected government is to wipe away the progress that has been made – progress that has been supported by both Democratic and Republican Presidents and Congresses.
To sign on, please contact Cliff Stammerman or Ben Dailey in Congressman Delahunt’s office at (202) 226- 6434 or at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
James P. McGovern
Condemning the June 28, 2009 coup d’état in Honduras, calling for the reinstatement of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales, and for other purposes.
Whereas Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales was elected President of Honduras in November 2005 in elections that were deemed free and fair by international observers;
Whereas President Zelaya and other political actors in Honduras became embroiled in a political dispute over whether to hold a non-binding referendum asking Honduran voters whether they wanted a constituent assembly to be established to amend the Constitution;
Whereas on June 28, 2009, the day that the non- binding referendum was to take place, Honduran military forces stormed President Zelaya’s residence, apprehended him, sent him out of the country, and seized the materials for the referendum;
Whereas the Honduran Congress named Roberto Micheletti, the head of the Congress, as President and subsequently suspended a number of constitutional rights, including the freedom of association and of movement;
Whereas the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights has expressed its concerns regarding human rights abuses by the de facto Micheletti government, including the arbitrary detention of Zelaya supporters;
Whereas the Organization of American States, the United Nations, and the European Union – representing governments from across the political spectrum – have condemned the coup d’état, refused to recognize the de facto Micheletti government, and demanded the unconditional return of President Zelaya to office;
Whereas on July 1, 2009, the Organization of American States voted unanimously to suspend Honduras from participation in the OAS unless President Zelaya was returned to office within three days;
Whereas, on July 4, 2009, the OAS unanimously voted to suspend Honduras;
Whereas the Administration of President Barack Obama has condemned President Zelaya’s removal, supported the OAS resolutions regarding Honduras, and demanded that he be returned to office;
Whereas the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank have suspended aid and loans to Honduras;
Whereas national elections are scheduled in Honduras for November 29, 2009;
Whereas President Zelaya has said that he will only serve until his term ends in January 2010;
Whereas it is critical for the stability of Honduras that the November 2009 elections be free, fair, and transparent; and
Whereas U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced on July 7, 2009, that Costa Rican President Oscar Arias would seek to negotiate a solution to the crisis, and President Zelaya and the de facto Micheletti government have agreed to the mediation of President Arias.
Therefore, the House of Representatives:
1) Condemns the June 28, 2009 coup d’état in Honduras and refuses to recognize the de facto Micheletti government installed by that coup d’état;
2) Calls on the Obama Administration to continue to refuse to recognize the de facto Micheletti government;
3) Calls for the reinstatement of President Zelaya as President of Honduras;
4) Urges the Obama Administration to suspend non-humanitarian assistance to the de facto Micheletti government as required by U.S. law and as it deems necessary to compel the return of President Zelaya to office;
5) Calls for extensive international observation of the November 2009 elections once President Zelaya is returned to office to ensure that his successor is elected freely, fairly, and transparently; and
6) Welcomes the mediation of Costa Rican President Oscar Arias and encourages the Obama Administration to provide any assistance President Arias requests in his efforts.