Peoples and governments of the ALBA are at battle, Chávez affirms

CARACAS, June 28 (PL). — Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez affirmed today that the governments and peoples of the ALBA have declared themselves at battle until the rule of law is restored in Honduras, after a coup d’état was carried out against President Manuel Zelaya.

In a special edition of his radio and TV program “Hello, Mr. President” from Miraflores Palace, President Chávez recounted the experiences of Cuban Ambassador Juan Carlos Hernández and Venezuelan Ambassador Armando Laguna in Tegucigalpa, where they were beaten by soldiers participating in the military coup.

“Venezuela is at battle; we, the peoples, declare ourselves to be at battle; the governments and peoples of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) declare ourselves to be at battle,” he emphasized.

“The Cuban ambassador was beaten, and so was ours,” Chávez said, noting that at 12:15 local time in Honduras, he was able to speak with both ambassadors.

“Both of our ambassadors have been trampled on,” he affirmed, calling for it to be denounced to the world. “Apparently the leaders of this coup are capable of anything,” he added.

Moments earlier, Laguna had stated to the Telesur television network that they were kidnapped and beaten by a group from the Honduran Armed Forces who were wearing hoods.

He explained that Honduran Foreign Minister Patricia Rodas was forced into a truck and taken to an air base.

“They did not respect diplomatic immunity; they were told that we were protected by the Vienna Convention,” Laguna said, adding that the only response was for them to push Rodas and force her into the truck, he emphasized.

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