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Hondurans Protest Allowing President a Second Term

  • Reuters

A police truck extinguishes a burning highway maintenance vehicle, after police dispersed protesters blocking a toll road and encouraging drivers not to pay, in Zambrano, north of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Oct. 3, 2016. Groups organized by opposition political party LIBRE blocked major highways in multiple locations to protest against highway tolls.

A police truck extinguishes a burning highway maintenance vehicle, after police dispersed protesters blocking a toll road and encouraging drivers not to pay, in Zambrano, north of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Oct. 3, 2016. Groups organized by opposition political party LIBRE blocked major highways in multiple locations to protest against highway tolls.

Clashes broke out in Honduras Monday as police fired tear gas on demonstrators blocking highway toll stations in protest of efforts by the ruling party to allow a presidential re-election and keep the incumbent Juan Hernandez in power.

The protesters were also demonstrating against increases in highway toll rates and the cost of electricity.

Urged on by the opposition Liberty and Refoundation Party (LIBRE), protesters took toll stations in the center and north of the Central American country, sparking clashes in which at least 14 people were arrested, a police official said.

LIBRE is the party of former president Manuel Zelaya, who was deposed in a 2009 coup after a bitter political standoff over re-election, which Hernandez's party has supported for the next vote, due toward the end of 2017.

Hernandez, of the conservative National Party, has not said whether he will seek re-election, nor has he ruled it out.

Last year, the Supreme Court of Honduras struck down a law that banned presidents from seeking a second term.

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