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U.S. to cut off aid to Honduras

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has decided to cut off all non-humanitarian aid to Honduras over the June coup that overthrew President Manuel Zelaya, said her spokesman on Thursday.

State Department spokesman Ian Kelly told reporters that the state secretary recognized when she was meeting with Zelaya here "the need for strong measures" to overcome the de facto regime's resistance to international efforts to end the crisis.

"The Secretary of State has made the decision, consistent with U.S. legislation, recognizing the need for strong measures in light of the continued resistance to the adoption of the San Jose Accord by the de facto regime and continuing failure to restore democratic, constitutional rule to Honduras," Kelly said.

However, he did not say how much assistance would be cut. Earlier U.S. media reports said that the decision concerns an economic aid of more than 200 million U.S. dollar.

The U.S. government has earlier announced the suspension of nearly 20 million dollars in military and development assistance to Honduras.

Kelly also said that the United States would not recognize the results of the scheduled election in Honduras, which it does not believe can meet international standards.

"That election must be undertaken in a free, fair and transparent manner," he said. "It must also be free of taint and open to all Hondurans to exercise their democratic franchise. At this moment, we would not be able to support the outcome of the scheduled elections."

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 Source : Xinhua  Editor: Ivy
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