The Organization of American States has issued a stern ultimatum to the leaders of the military coup in Honduras. The organization gave the interim government in Honduras 72 hours to reinstate democracy or face possible suspension in a resolution approved on Wednesday.
Members of the 34-nation grouping of hemispheric nations held an emergency meeting at its headquarters in the U.S. capital to discuss the overthrow of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya.
The OAS condemned the coup and demanded the "immediate, safe, and unconditional return of the president to his constitutional functions."
It declared that "no government arising from this unconstitutional interruption will be recognized."
It instructed OAS chief Jose Miguel Insulza to undertake "diplomatic initiatives aimed at restoring democracy and the rule of law and the reinstatement" of Zelaya.
"Should these prove unsuccessful within 72 hours, the Special General Assembly shall forthwith ... suspend Honduras' membership," the resolution said.
The OAS ultimatum came after the 192-member United Nations General Assembly voted unanimously, Tuesday, to denounce the coup and deny recognition to any government except Zelaya's. The ousted president addressed the world body after the vote and denounced the coup.
"A number of charges have been leveled against your humble servant in Honduras," Zelaya said. "But I have not been put on trial. I have not been called to the stand to defend myself. Nobody has told me what my crime is. Nobody has indicated what my errors [are], no accusations have been brought to my attention by any judge."
The caretaker president of Honduras said Tuesday he would send a delegation to Washington for talks with the Organization of American States (OAS).
Roberto Micheletti told a press conference in Tegucigalpa that the delegation, consisting of politicians, business leaders, lawyers and farmers, will travel to the headquarters of the OAS in Washington Wednesday on behalf of his government.
The delegation would also explain to Jose Miguel Insulza, the OAS secretary general, "what really happened" in Honduras, Micheletti said.
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