The National Catholic Review
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Nonviolent protesters opposed to the ouster of President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras are regularly intimidated, jailed, beaten and raped by the country’s security forces, members of a delegation of U.S. Catholic religious leaders have said. During a weeklong visit to Central America’s second poorest country, representatives from Pax Christi International and the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas met with dozens of people from several cities who said they were attacked by Honduran soldiers and members of the national police as the security forces swept in to break up their demonstrations. The demonstrators, which include teachers, students and church workers, have been calling for the return of Zelaya to the presidency until the conclusion of his term later this year. Zelaya was removed from office on June 28 during a predawn raid on the presidential palace in Tegucigalpa, the Honduran capital.