Statement by Minister of State Kent on Inauguration of Honduran President

(No. 48 – January 28, 2010 – 6:45 p.m. ET) The Honourable Peter Kent, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas), today issued the following statement regarding the January 27 inauguration of Porfirio Lobo as Honduras's new president:

"Canada congratulates President Lobo as he begins his term. I am confident that he will provide the strong political leadership needed to help Honduras move beyond its lengthy political impasse.

"As Hondurans begin this new chapter in their history, Canada stands ready to assist with the challenges that lie ahead. As we have throughout the impasse, Canada will continue to do all it can to help Honduras quickly return to full democratic and constitutional order. Once that has been achieved, we will also support President Lobo's efforts as he moves to fully reintegrate Honduras into the international and hemispheric community, including in the Organization of American States.

"While we are disappointed that the Tegucigalpa/San José Accord has not been fully implemented, we are encouraged that President Lobo is taking concrete steps that reflect the spirit of the Accord. Canada also commends the efforts of President Lobo in securing safe passage for President Manuel Zelaya and his family to the Dominican Republic. This is an important and conciliatory first step by the new President.

"Honduras is beginning the process of renewal, and Canada looks forward to working with President Lobo's government as it forges a path toward national reconciliation and economic recovery. We will be watching intently in the days and weeks ahead, as President Lobo announces his unity government, and begins the process to establish a Truth Commission."

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Eleanor Johnston
Senior Special Assistant (Communications)
Office of the Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas)
613-947-8981

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-995-1874