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Honduran Talks to Proceed Without Leaders


Talks to solve Honduras' political crisis will continue without the direct participation of the nation's rival leaders, after a first day of mediation in Costa Rica ended without a deal.

On Thursday, ousted President Manuel Zelaya and interim President Roberto Micheletti met separately with Costa Rican President Oscar Arias at his home in San Jose. The two leaders refused to meet face to face.

After the talks, Mr. Micheletti told reporters he was "satisfied" and returned to Honduras. It is unclear if Mr. Zelaya will remain in Costa Rica.

Delegations representing both sides will continue to meet with Mr. Arias. The Costa Rican leader told reporters that finding a solution to the crisis "could possibly take longer than one might have imagined."

During Thursday's talks, the two rivals continued to maintain their unconditional right to lead the country.

Mr. Zelaya continued to demand that the interim government immediately reinstate him after forcibly expelling him from the country on June 28.

Interim President Micheletti told reporters that he will only discuss the ousted president's return if it involves Mr. Zelaya appearing in court to face charges of treason and abuse of power.

The caretaker government has accused Mr. Zelaya of illegally trying to change the constitution in order to extend his term.

The issue has divided the country, where supporters of both sides continue to hold competing demonstrations.

The United States has opposed the ouster and refused to recognize the interim government of Mr. Micheletti, despite his assertions that Mr. Zelaya was legally removed.


Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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