Honduran Government to Investigate Election Meddling Claims
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TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, Nov. 17, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Yesterday, in a statement published by Honduran outlet El Heraldo, Otto Reich, the former U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela under President Ronald Reagan and the former Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs under President George W. Bush, claimed that Venezuelan nationals were attempting to interfere in Honduras's November 26 election.
In response, the Government of the Republic of Honduras issued the following statement:
"The appropriate Honduran authorities are conducting a full and thorough investigation into Ambassador Reich's claims. We have been doing absolutely everything in our power to ensure that this month's election is free and fair, and that means taking every threat to democracy seriously.
"Ambassador Reich said that Venezuelan government activists have attempted to sow 'national destabilization, violence, strikes, [and] attacks' in Honduras by sending Venezuelan nationals into the country over the last two months. Reich claims that these Venezuelans came disguised as 'tourists, technicians and businesspeople' and that they 'came to have an impact on the electoral process of this Central American country.'
"We are aware of these claims and are looking into them as part of our broader campaign to safeguard the integrity of our nation's electoral process.
"The Honduran Supreme Electoral Tribunal has invited electoral observers from the European Union, the Organization of American States, the U.S. Embassy in Honduras, and several former heads of state from Europe and Latin America to monitor this month's election. In total, more than 800 international and 6,000 domestic observers will oversee voting.
"We are also dispatching the necessary security forces to protect the will of the Honduran people. This week, hundreds of Honduran soldiers and police officers headed to Honduran slums to stop gang interference in political campaigning."
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