News

Electoral crisis in Honduras / “Pole for self-determination” in Sardinia

24 to 30 November

Leaders unveil Sardinian pole.
Leaders unveil Sardinian pole. Autor/a: Consiglio Regionale Sardegna
WEEKLY ROUNDUP. The week is loaded with tension in Honduras amid protests and fraud allegation in the aftermath of the presidential election in which a coalition of opposition parties supported by the main Indigenous umbrella group has sought to defeat president Juan Orlando Hernandez. Meanwhile, in Sardinia, eight pro-sovereignty parties and movements have unveiled a “pole for self-determination” that aims to win the 2019 Sardinian election. In Southeast Asia, Burma and Bangladesh have inked a controversial deal on the return of Rohingya refugees.


NEWS HIGHLIGHT

Crisis in Honduras over presidential election result. Supporters of opposition candidate Salvador Nasralla are protesting since Wednesday 29 against what they believe is a government-orchestrated electoral fraud to keep incumbent Juan Orlando Hernández in the country’s presidency. Nasralla, the candidate of the Alliance of Opposition against the Dictatorship (AOD), has encouraged his supporters to demonstrate and has warned he will not recognize the official result. The ongoing count shows Hernández as provisional winner, with a margin of less than 1 percentage point.

Before the election, AOD had accused Hernández and his government of putting in place a dictatorship —hence the alliance name— and of manipulating the Supreme Electoral Court for their benefit. President Hernández assumed office in 2014. He is the candidate of conservative National Party of Honduras.

AOD is supported by the Freedom and Refoundation Party (LIBRE, the left-wing party of Manuel Zelaya, former Honduran president unseated by a reactionary coup in 2009) and the Innovation and Unity Party (PINU, social democrat). The alliance is also backed by multiple social movements and grassroots associations, including the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), the organization to which assassinated activists Berta Cáceres and Lesbia Yaneth Urquía were members. COPINH has called on state authorities “to respect the will of the Honduran people” and has labeled Hernández “a dictator”.

MOREOVER

A “pole for self-determination” in Sardinia. Eight Sardinian parties and movements have unveiled an alliance, “intended to last in time,” that seeks to emerge as an alternative in the island to the big Italian parties. The new alliance includes the Rossomori, IRS, Sardigna Natzione, Liberu and the parties and movements that supported writer Michela Murgia’s list in 2014. The Sardinian Party of Action has been left out of the alliance. The newly forged group says it will seek victory in the 2019 Sardinia election. In 2014, pro-sovereignty votes reached 18%, but they were divided into multiple lists.

Controversial deal on Rohingya people. Burma and Bangladesh have inked an agreement for the voluntary return of the Rohingya —at least 600,000 of them are currently sheltered in Bangladeshi refugee camps. Amnesty International claims the return of refugees to Burma “is unthinkable” while that country maintains “a system of apartheid” and “ethnic cleansing”. Pope Francis, on a four-day visit to Burma, has avoided using the word “Rohingya” in order to avoid a diplomatic conflict with the Burmese authorities.

MORE FEATURE STORIES AND ANALYSIS