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Honduras president says officials probing plot to kill him

By AFP   |   14 October 2016   |   12:30 pm
Photo released by the Honduran Presidency of Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez (L) shaking hands with a construction worker in Campamento, Olancho department, Honduras, on October 13, 2016.  Honduran authorities are investigating an alleged drug traffickers' plan against Hernandez and US Ambassador in Tegucigalpa James Nealon. / AFP PHOTO / Honduran Presidency / HO /

Photo released by the Honduran Presidency of Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez (L) shaking hands with a construction worker in Campamento, Olancho department, Honduras, on October 13, 2016.<br />Honduran authorities are investigating an alleged drug traffickers’ plan against Hernandez and US Ambassador in Tegucigalpa James Nealon. / AFP PHOTO / Honduran Presidency / HO /

The Honduran authorities are investigating an alleged drug cartel plan to assassinate President Juan Orlando Hernandez and the US ambassador to the country, the leader said on Thursday.

“There were indications of plans for an attack against Ambassador (James) Nealon and against (myself) by an Atlantic criminal group,” the president told local radio station HRN, referring to a Honduran cartel.

The information came from “sources of the Honduran state,” he said, adding that an investigation is ongoing.

His announcement comes after army captain Santos Rodriguez Orellana accused the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) on Wednesday of pressuring him to implicate Hernandez’s brother of involvement in a plan to kill the US ambassador.

He told local radio station Globo that DEA agents interrogated him on Sunday.

The United States is investigating Orellana for alleged corruption and ties to drugs gangs.

The president’s brother, Juan Antonio Hernandez, denied any illegal activities in a statement on Thursday.

The center-right Hernandez has cracked down against drug cartels that move cocaine into the United States through Honduras since he came to power in 2014, amid concerns among human rights groups.

Orellana’s wife Jennifer Bonilla told AFP that he had requested protection from the state national human rights commissioner for his family, saying he distrusts the military and government.




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