Discovered by Columbus in 1502, Honduras was ruled by Spain until independence in 1821. Political instability was endemic throughout the 19th and most of the 20th century. The end of military rule seemed to come in 1981 when a general election gave victory to the more liberal and non-military party, PLH (Partido Liberal de Honduras). However, power remained with the armed forces. Internal unrest continued into the 1990s with politicians and military leaders at loggerheads, particularly over attempts to investigate violations of human rights. In Oct. 1998 Honduras was devastated by Hurricane Mitch, the worst natural disaster to hit the area in modern times. In June 2009 PresidentManuel Zelaya was deposed in a military coup, leading to international condemnation and the suspension of aid. A presidential poll was held in Nov. 2009, with Porfirio Lobo Sosa of the National Party emerging victorious after Zelaya’s refusal to recognize the election. The following month Congress rejected proposals to return Zelaya to power and in Jan. 2010 Porfirio Lobo was sworn in as Zelaya went into exile.
KeywordsPresidential Election External Debt Debt Relief Liberal Party National Party
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