Honduran lockdown: A birthday cake for Mrs. Zelaya?

Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya got word that he became a grandfather while celebrating his wife's birthday from his perch in the Brazilian embassy in the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa.

By , Staff writer

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    Honduras' ousted President Manuel Zelaya, center, and his wife Xiomara Castro sit inside Brazil's embassy where they have been holed up for over a week in Tegucigalpa on Wednesday.
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TEGUCIGALPA, HONDURAS – Supporters of ousted President Manuel Zelaya continue to rally around his cause – and the Brazilian embassy in Honduras, where he's holed up since sneaking back into the country last week.

Evelyn Rosales, a sister-in-law of Mr. Zelaya who was dressed in jeans and pearl earrings, stood outside the embassy Wednesday morning waiting to deliver a breakfast of beans, pancakes, and tortillas to Zelaya and 80-some supporters inside.

It's a special day for Zelaya. He became grandfather to a baby boy, but was forced to hear his third grandchild's newborn cries over a cellphone, reports Reuters.
“We’re seeing this as a little light in the darkness,” said Rasel Tame, a pro-Zelaya lawmaker inside the embassy. “We’ve not seen photos yet on the Internet, but he heard the first cry on the call.”

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Today is also the birthday of the first lady, Xiomara Castro de Zelaya, Ms. Rosales said earlier that they were hoping to bring a birthday cake through security to the embassy. “But we never know what we can bring,” she complains. “The dogs sniff all the food, it takes hours to get through.”

Andrés Pavón, the president of the NGO Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Honduras, coordinates the food deliveries each day with a six-person team. They also deliver, in a red pick-up truck, clothes, medical supplies, cots, batteries, and anything else that is needed inside the embassy.

When Zelaya complained of chemicals being released into the air surrounding the embassy last week, Mr. Pavon and a team of doctors checked on the health of those inside. He says some people inside exhibited signs of contamination, and says his group will not let up until human rights are respected.

The neighbors around the embassy are coping with all the turmoil. But there are signs the impasse may soon end: Read about the latest political developments here.

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