I got on today to type up an update about the Honduras situation but Mark Connell beat me too it. Since he is down there and obviously knows more about what is going on than I do I figured I'd just let him update everyone so here you go.......
Well, the unexpected definitely happened yesterday. Mel Zelaya is back! He is currently taking refuge in the Brazilian Embassy here in Tegucigalpa. Yesterday's series of events was pretty wild. We first got reports of Mel's return around 11:00am. I called my sources here in the government and got strong denials about the accuracy of those reports. As we now know, my sources were wrong. He is definitely here and nobody is quite sure what comes next. The government established a curfew here in the country that began yesterday at 4:00pm. It was originally set to expire at 7:00am this morning, but late last night they decided to extend it until 6:00pm today. I am quite sure it will be extended again until tomorrow morning.
Lori was with the Mi Esperanza salon class and they were all at a local orphanage giving manicures, pedicures, and haircuts to the girls there as a service project. I talked to her around 1:00pm and suggested they try to finish and get home as there was bound to be a lot of chaos in the streets. At that time it was just a suggestion and they all decided they would do a few more girls then pack up and leave. I talked to her again just before 4:00 (which was the announced curfew time) and they were packing up to leave. The place they were at is only 10-15 minutes from our home. It took TWO HOURS! Most of the city was gridlocked as everyone tried to get home before the 4:00 curfew. Needless to say, not many made it.
Meanwhile, Mel was on the roof of the Brazilian Embassy giving a speech to the thousands of supporters that had gathered there. That was around 3:00 and it was the final verification that he was definitely here. Some estimates say there were tens of thousands there to support him. From the images on television I would say it was closer to thousands than tens of thousands. A friend of ours, David Logue was trying to get to his home and he had to literally have the police clear a path for him through the people. He said it was pretty intense. We lost power for about thirty minutes last night. They are reporting that power to the Brazilian Embassy has been shut down. There is no way to verify any of the reports. That is definitely something that is very different here. Freedom of the press is not really the same. If this was happening in the States, it would be all over the news on every channel. Here, you can't find much at all and what you find is usually "in favor" of the current government and opposed to Mel. Channel 36, Cholusat Sur, has been off the air since about 3:30 yesterday. It is a station that is pro-Zelaya. It was definitely shut down purposely by the current government.
It is being reported that this morning the police moved in to disperse the crowd from in front of the Brazilian Embassy. There used tear gas and a water truck. There are reports of one death, but it is unconfirmed. The current pictures on TV are showing the empty streets of Tegucigalpa. They are showing that the street in front of the Embassy is now clear and blocked off and surrounded by local authorities. Nobody is being allowed in or out of the area. Just now, they interviewed a woman who lives by the embassy and she was yelling at the camera blaming Zelaya and the Brazilian government for damages to her house asking who was going to pay her for the damages. She is MAD!
That's about it for now. I'll try to post more later.