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Honduras

Security forces raid occupied site

October 01, 2009|Times Wire Reports

Soldiers and police enforced an emergency decree suspending civil liberties despite promises by the coup-imposed government to lift the measures criticized by its own allies as going too far.

About 150 police officers and soldiers acting on the decree raided the offices of the National Agrarian Institute, occupied by supporters of ousted President Manuel Zelaya since the June 28 coup.

Authorities detained 54 farm activists and Zelaya supporters, police spokesman Orlin Cerrato said.

Cerrato said the action was aimed at recovering control of the building, which contains valuable land title records.

One of the detained activists, 69-year-old farmer Jose Irene Murillo, said he feared that "they are going to destroy the records of the small farmers, because the big landowners want the land."

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