Thursday, January 21, 2021
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Honduran ex-president stopped with bag containing $18,000 in cash at airport

Former Honduran president Manuel Zelaya mentioned on Friday that he had been “unjustly” detained on the airport for carrying a bag with $18,000 in money that he mentioned was not his.

“I do not know the origin of that cash. Clearly, somebody will need to have put it in my belongings,” Mr Zelaya instructed native media.

“I’ve travelled 400 instances and I do know that you just can’t journey with that sum of money. It’s needed to research who put that cash in my belongings,” he mentioned.

Honduran legal guidelines designed to regulate trafficking and cash laundering enable travellers to take as much as $10,000 in money overseas at one time. The cash should be declared to authorities.

Mr Zelaya introduced on Friday night on Twitter that he had been “unjustly detained” on the Toncontin worldwide airport within the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa, as he ready to journey to Mexico for a seminar.

He mentioned he was stopped at immigration management after a search of his carry-on baggage.

A spokesman for Honduras’ public prosecutor’s workplace denied that Zelaya was detained.

“What is going on is what the regulation says, which suggests documenting [what happened] and as soon as that’s full and signed by former president Zelaya, the place he states the cash just isn’t his, he can simply go,” spokesman Yuri Mora instructed Reuters.

A gaggle of supporters of the previous president protested in opposition to his arrest exterior the airport, reportedly burning tires and blocking site visitors. Police fired tear gasoline to disperse them after they tried to achieve the room the place Mr Zelaya was stopped.

In safety footage that was printed by the Honduran press and circulated broadly within the nation, the previous president is seen sporting a black coat and taking the cash from a backpack in entrance of customs officers in a room. They ask him to rely the cash in entrance of them.

“They demanded that I rely the cash one after the other and add it up despite the fact that I used to be not the proprietor, and they didn’t wish to rely it, claiming that it’s my backpack and I ought to do it,” Mr Zelaya mentioned on Twitter.

“I wished to board and there have been solely 10 minutes left. That video is evidently reduce and edited.”

The left-leaning Zelaya, 68, led Honduras from 2006 to 2009 and was an ally of late Venezuelan chief Hugo Chavez.

He was deposed in a army coup in June 2009 coup as he ready to carry a referendum on presidential re-election, which his opponents mentioned was a ploy to remain in energy.

He’s nonetheless the chief of the left-leaning Partido Libertad y Refundacion. His spouse Iris Xiomara Castro de Zelaya ran within the nation’s presidential elections in 2013 however didn’t be elected.

Mr Zelaya, who has since been launched, instructed native media that he deliberate to journey to Houston, Texas on a layover earlier than flying to his ultimate vacation spot, Mexico, the place he is because of take part in a seminar organised by the native leftist occasion Partito del Trabajo (Labour Occasion, PT).

Further reporting by Reuters

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