EU condemns arrest of Honduras president
The European Union on Sunday condemned what it called a "coup d'etat" against Honduras President Manuel Zelaya, Reuters reported.
Witnesses said leftist president Zelaya was detained at home by troops in a constitutional crisis over his attempt to win re-election. CNN's Spanish-language channel later quoted Costa Rican officials as saying he was in Costa Rica and seeking political asylum. "This is an unacceptable violation of constitutional order in Honduras," Czech Foreign Minister Jan Kohout, from the EU presidency, told reporters after an EU meeting on the Greek island of Corfu.
He termed the action "a coup d'etat".
"The EU calls for the urgent release of President Zelaya and a swift return to the constitutional normality," Kohout said.
A witness said some 200 armed soldiers in combat gear had surrounded the presidential palace and more were arriving. Two air force fighters screamed over the capital.
The leftist president, an ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, fired the armed forces chief of staff last week for refusing to help him organize an unofficial referendum on Sunday on allowing presidents to serve more than a single four-year term.