TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, Feb. 15, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This week, Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández asked the United Nations to investigate whether criminal gangs, including MS 13, interfered in the country's election this past November in favor of Salvador Nasralla, the Opposition Alliance's candidate for the presidency.
"There is strong evidence that members of organized criminal gangs tried to disrupt our national elections last November by intimidating voters and threatening their lives," Hernández said. "My administration is calling for a full investigation by the UN. We will not stand for these kinds of attacks on our democracy."
A UN mission arrived in Honduras earlier this month to begin the process of facilitating a dialogue among the National Party, the Opposition Alliance, and the Liberal Party -- the parties that fielded the top three presidential candidates in November's elections. President Hernández, of the National Party, received 42.95 percent of the vote. Nasralla, of the Opposition Alliance, garnered 41.24 percent; the Liberal Party's Luis Zelaya tallied 14.74 percent.
The Opposition Alliance's leaders, Nasralla and former Honduran president Manuel Zelaya, have refused to meet with the UN mission. At a press conference, President Hernández suggested that Nasralla and Zelaya have balked because they do not want to face questions from the international organization about their ties to organized crime and gangs, including MS 13. This week, Zelaya called for "10,000 commandos" to mobilize against the Honduran government.
"I am committed to fostering a dialogue with the Honduran people so that our nation can move forward," Hernández said. "I call on Salvador Nasralla, Manuel Zelaya, and all Hondurans to reject violence -- and to join me on the path toward reconciliation and peace."
SOURCE Republic of Honduras