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Hernandez declared winner of Honduras presidential race, opposition calls for rallies

Press TV – December 18, 2017

In Honduras, incumbent Juan Orlando Hernandez has been declared the winner of last month’s disputed presidential election after a partial recount, with the opposition candidate rejecting the results and calling for fresh protests.

The Supreme Electoral Tribunal said Sunday after the official recount that Hernandez has won with 42.95 percent to 41.42 for challenger Salvador Nasralla.

“We have fulfilled our obligation (and) we wish for there to be peace in our country,” the tribunal’s president David Matamoros said.

Matamoros said the tribunal had resolved all the disputed issues, and that votes were recounted at select polling stations.

The count has, however, been questioned by the two main opposition parties and monitors with the Organization of American States (OAS).

As he left for the United States, Nasralla rejected Hernandez’s re-election as illegitimate and called for more protest rallies on Monday.

“The declaration by the court is a mockery because it tramples the will of the people,” Nasralla said. He added that he was “very optimistic” because “the people do not endorse fraud.”

He also said he would urge the OAS in Washington to invoke its democratic charter against Honduras.

The former Honduran president, Manuel Zelaya, who backed Nasralla, tweeted Hernandez “is not our president,” urging people to take to the streets in protest.

Meanwhile, the OAS secretary general, Luis Almagro, said “serious questions” surrounded the election results, urging Honduran officials to avoid making “irresponsible announcements.”

He also called for a fresh presidential election to guarantee peace in the country, which has been the scene of angry protests and clashes since the November 26 presidential election.

However, European Union election observers said the vote recount showed no irregularities.

The initial results had shown Nasralla with a significant lead over Hernandez with nearly 60 percent of the vote counted.

The electoral tribunal then went mysteriously silent, giving no further public updates for about 36 hours, and when they resumed, Nasralla’s lead steadily eroded and ultimately reversed in favor of Hernandez.

The protests and violence, which broke out over the manner of announcing the results, has killed at least 22 people.

December 18, 2017 - Posted by | Aletho News | ,

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