Philip J. Crowley
Assistant Secretary
Daily Press Briefing
Washington, DC
September 3, 2009


Index for Today's Briefing
  • Editor's Note: This Briefing has been posted in two parts. Part 2 is at http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2009/sept/128655.htm
  • STATEMENT
    • Announces termination of a broad range of assistance to Government of Honduras
    • Decision made by Secretary recognizing the need for strong measures because of continuing failure to restore democratic, constitution rule
    • Restoration of terminated assistance will be predicated upon return to democratic, constitutional governance in Honduras
    • Revoking visas of identified individual members and supporters of de factor regime
    • U.S. will not support an outcome of scheduled elections in November / a positive conclusion of the Arias process would provide a sound basis for legitimate elections to proceed
    • U.S. urges all parties to the San Jose talks to move expeditiously to agreement
  • HONDURAS
    • Secretary met with President Zelaya for 1 hour this afternoon; explained decisions she had made this morning; reaffirmed US commitment to restore President Zelaya to office
    • Actions convey message that status quo is unacceptable; San Jose Accords need to be signed
    • About $30 million is available to be reprogrammed for other purposes / includes $11 million of Millennium Challenge Corporation funds; MCC board to meet next week and decide
    • Decision to terminate assistance did not hinge on a need to formally call it a military coup
    • Last contact with Micheletti government was last week in Washington
    • Suspension of aid was within the authority of the Secretary; question taken: if Secretary determined it to be a coup, would you have to go to Congress to restart aid?
    • Aid "terminated" is the same amount of aid that was previously "suspended"
    • MCC money in the outlaying years is not affected; will be considered by MCC board
    • Secretary encouraged Zelaya to take actions, create assurances to help build trust; encouraged all sides to tone down the rhetoric
    • Recognize there is a severe fracture with Honduran society; striving to avoid any steps that would precipitate violence; support the Arias process as the means to move forward to a legitimate election and a new government
    • Current U.S. diplomatic presence in Honduras has played a constructive role
    • U.S. has already taken action regarding military cooperation and military assistance
    • Honduran business community will see that if will be more difficult to do business with the United States;
    • U.S. still values its relationship with Honduras people; will continue to find ways to support the Honduran people; HIV/AIDS, child survival, food aid, disaster assistance will continue
  • This Index continues at http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2009/sept/128655.htm


TRANSCRIPT:

(2:42 p.m. EDT)

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MR. CROWLEY: I apologize for the delay, but --

QUESTION: Yeah. Speaking of delays, this conference call?

MR. CROWLEY: The background briefing will follow this briefing and we’ll give a suitable interval to make sure that people get properly positioned.

Good afternoon, and welcome to the State Department. Just to kind of repeat the high points of the announcement we made a short time ago, the Department of State announces the termination of a broad range of assistance to the Government of Honduras as a result of the coup d’état that took place on June 28. The Secretary already had suspended assistance shortly after the coup.

The Secretary of State has made the decision, consistent with U.S. legislation, recognizing the need for strong measures in light of the continued resistance of the adoption of the San Jose Accord by the de facto regime and continuing failure to restore democratic, constitutional rule to Honduras.

The Department of State recognizes the complicated nature of the actions which led to the June 28 coup d’état in which Honduras’s democratically elected leader, President Zelaya, was removed from office. These events involve complex factual and legal questions, and the participants of both the – participation of both the legislative and judicial branches of government, as well as the military.

Restoration of the terminated assistance will be predicated upon a return of – to democratic, constitutional governance in Honduras.

The Department of State further announces that we have identified individual members and supporters of the de facto regime whose visas are in the process of being revoked.

A presidential election is currently scheduled for November. That election must be undertaken in a free, fair, and transparent manner. It must also be free of taint and open to all Hondurans to exercise their democratic franchise. And at this moment, we would not be able to support the outcome of the scheduled elections. A positive conclusion of the Arias process would provide a sound basis for legitimate elections to proceed. We strongly urge all parties to the San Jose talks to move expeditiously to agreement.

Obviously, we put out that statement this morning. The Secretary met for roughly an hour with President Zelaya early this afternoon. Their discussion – President Zelaya brought the Secretary up to date on his assessment of the current situation in Honduras. The Secretary explained to President Zelaya the decisions that she has made this morning, reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to restore President Zelaya to office as part of the Arias process leading to the election of a new government in Honduras.

But clearly, today’s action sends a clear message to the de facto regime that the status quo is unacceptable and that their strategy to try to run out the clock on President Zelaya’s term of office is unacceptable, and the time has come for all of the parties to sign the San Jose Accords.

QUESTION: Can you – a couple things.

MR. CROWLEY: Sure.

QUESTION: One, how much money are we talking about here?

MR. CROWLEY: We’re talking about over $30 million. And really, what – you’ll recall that previously we had pushed the pause button. We have now today pushed the stop button. Over $30 million is available to be reprogrammed for other purposes. And that we will have to press a start button at some point in the future through some deliberative process for aid to be restored to Honduras.

QUESTION: Except --

QUESTION: Can I ask, just directly related to the money, does that 30 million include any money from the Millennium Challenge Corporation?

MR. CROWLEY: I believe it includes $11 million from the Millennium Account. And obviously, on MCC money, those are decisions that the MCC board will have to make next week when they meet, I believe, on Wednesday.

QUESTION: Okay. But that was my next question. How can you claim that the money has been terminated if the statutory authority to terminate the MCC money resides solely and exclusively with the MCC board of directors, of which the Secretary is a member but not the sole one? There are eight members of it, so how can you say it’s been terminated if the board hasn’t voted?

MR. CROWLEY: I’ll take that question.

QUESTION: Will you get back to us on that today?

MR. CROWLEY: Sure.

QUESTION: And --

MR. CROWLEY: I mean – well, put it this way – some of these technical details, I think, other briefers will be able to go into greater detail than I can.

QUESTION: And then secondly, why not go the whole distance and make the determination that this is a coup, a legal determination?

MR. CROWLEY: Well --

QUESTION: A military coup.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, but the Secretary, in terminating the aid, did not have to reach that conclusion.

QUESTION: But why didn’t she reach that conclusion? Why, when the democratically elected president of a sovereign country gets bundled onto an airplane in his pajamas by the military and flown into exile, is that not a military coup?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, let’s focus on what we are trying to do here. We are trying to see democratic, constitutional rule restored in Honduras. That is our purpose. We are acting based on the democratic principles that we embrace and that the OAS embraces. What the Secretary has tried to do throughout this process is we take steps that we believe apply – send the right message, apply the right pressures, trying to yield the proper outcome. That is why we have taken the various actions that we’ve taken since June 28th.

Both to – declare it to be a coup. The President declared it. The Secretary declared it. We suspended the aid, and now we’ve terminated the aid. The OAS has suspended Honduras from the organization. We’re now applying additional pressure. We believe that the steps that we’ve taken, that they’ve – there’s a sense that the de facto regime was thinking, if we can just get to an election, that this would absolve them of all their sins. And we’re saying, clearly, that is not the case, that we – there will have to be definitive steps taken. We’ll have to see the restoration of a democratically elected government through a fair, free, and transparent process in the future.

So this is about the signal that we’re sending to Honduras. This is not about steps that the United States is taking. This is about steps that the de facto regime at this point must take. Their only option at this point is to accept the principles in the Arias process, sign that agreement, and move Honduras forward towards a new government, subject, obviously, to the stipulations of the Arias process, including international monitoring, so that we – so ultimately, we can see in Honduras a legitimate government that the people of Honduras, others in the region, can support and believe in.

QUESTION: But why isn’t it a military coup?

MR. CROWLEY: I’m not going to parse complex facts and judgments here. The Secretary did not have to make that determination to take the action that she has taken.

QUESTION: I know, but --

MR. CROWLEY: Our action today is to send a very clear message to the de facto regime: Their strategy will not work. They have to sign on to the San Jose Accords. There are things that they must do. This is not about what the United States is doing. This is about what they must do if they’re going to get out of the hole that they have put themselves in.

QUESTION: But President Zelaya says that --

QUESTION: I need to ask a question --

QUESTION: -- you’re sending a mixed message, because on one hand, yes, you’re suspending aid. You’re not definitively calling it a military coup. And this – and he charges that this Micheletti government is not taking you seriously, is not kind of respecting your will that if you were to be declarative about what you think this is, that you would – he would have a better leg to stand on.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, I think we’ve actually sent, Elise, a very clear message. The United States is sending a very clear and compelling message to the de facto regime: The status quo isn’t acceptable. They have, in fact, failed to sign on to the San Jose Accords. They have, in fact, failed to assure the international community they are willing to abide by the outlines of the Arias process – the international monitoring, the truth and reconciliation commission.

The United States is sending a very clear message here: We want to see democratic, constitutional rule restored to Honduras through peaceful means. That has been our policy objective since June 28th, and we continue to take the steps that we are taking to put pressure on the de facto regime to change its current position. We have supported the Arias process so that we have the outlines of an agreement that will resolve this crisis.

And our clear message to the de facto regime and Honduras is: It’s time to sign on to the San Jose Accords, take the steps that are outlined there, move Honduras towards a better future.

Janine.

QUESTION: I misread the statement and thought this was the announcement. So what is the essential difference now, though, in terms of calling it a coup d’état versus calling it a military coup? Does it mean you don’t have to go to Congress to reinstate the aid? Is there something substantively different?

MR. CROWLEY: We will – in order to restart aid at some point in the future, we will have to go through some sort of deliberative process, but that process will be based on our assessment of whether democratic constitutional rule has been restored to Honduras through a process that we believe is free, fair and transparent.

QUESTION: Is that the key difference, though? Is there some other difference?

MR. CROWLEY: The key difference is that the aid that we have suspended is now terminated, which means it’s, in essence, for the moment, lost to Honduras. We have tried to say over time – and while our diplomatic efforts continue, we haven’t given up on diplomacy yet. We’ll continue to work at – in Honduras, here in Washington, to try to convince the de facto regime to change its current position.

The Secretary today talked with President Zelaya about steps that we feel that he can take to reassure the de facto regime that he is prepared to live and abide by the San Jose Accords. We want to be sure that whatever steps are taken by any party going forward, that they are done in a peaceful way. We believe that’s important to lower the rhetoric on all sides so that there is not risk of further violence.

QUESTION: I don’t understand the difference.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, but the difference here is that it is the process by which aid will need to be --

QUESTION: It is what I said.

MR. CROWLEY: -- restarted in the future.

QUESTION: It’s not new aid; it doesn’t have to go through Congress, is what you’re saying, to reinstate the aid? You guys deliberate?

MR. CROWLEY: We – right.

QUESTION: Okay.

MR. CROWLEY: Right.

QUESTION: And it’s not --

QUESTION: P.J., when is the last time that the State Department had any direct contact with the Micheletti government or the de facto regime, and who had it, aside from your comments this morning?

MR. CROWLEY: Charles, I think last week, we had meetings here in Washington. There was a delegation here who met with Craig Kelly.

QUESTION: P.J. --

QUESTION: So I just want to make sure I understand this. If you had made – if she had made the determination, you would have had to go to Congress to reinstate the aid?

MR. CROWLEY: But --

QUESTION: By doing it – by not making the determination and still terminating the aid, you – the Administration can, just by itself, decide to restart it?

MR. CROWLEY: That’s a good question to ask the next briefers.

QUESTION: So that means you don’t know?

QUESTION: Well, that means that you did --

MR. CROWLEY: That means --

QUESTION: You just told Janine --

QUESTION: You just told Janine, you know --

MR. CROWLEY: Right. All right.

QUESTION: It’s in the transcript, so is it right or is it not right?

MR. CROWLEY: What’s the question?

QUESTION: That’s exactly Matt’s question.

QUESTION: The question is this: By deciding not to make the coup determination, does that mean that the --

MR. CROWLEY: I can answer that question. This action today was within the authority of the Secretary.

QUESTION: No one is suggesting that it wasn’t.

MR. CROWLEY: But –

QUESTION: I’m just trying to figure out what the difference is between what she did and --

MR. CROWLEY: Can I answer the question you asked me?

QUESTION: Well, I guess – I didn’t get to ask the question.

MR. CROWLEY: Okay.

QUESTION: You stopped me after --

MR. CROWLEY: All right.

QUESTION: I didn’t get to ask the question.

MR. CROWLEY: Please ask your question.

QUESTION: Is the difference between what she did today and find – and making the determination that the Administration does not have to go back to Congress to get – to restart the aid?

MR. CROWLEY: It is within the powers of the Secretary of State to stop the aid, as she did today. And it’s within the authority of the Secretary, subject to a deliberative process, to restart the aid in the future, if we believe that --

QUESTION: I understand that.

MR. CROWLEY: Yeah.

QUESTION: -- but if she had made the determination.

MR. CROWLEY: Yes.

QUESTION: The short answer is yes.

QUESTION: But if she had me the --

MR. CROWLEY: The Secretary has the power to stop it and the Secretary has the power to restart it.

QUESTION: But that – that’s not the question. The question is, if she had made the determination that it was a coup, would you have to go to Congress to restart the --

MR. CROWLEY: I will take that question.

QUESTION: Well, the problem here is, P.J., you just – Janine asked that same thing, and you said yes.

MR. CROWLEY: I was answering a different question. I’ll tell you what. I will take the question of the differentiation between the steps she took today and a notional, theoretical step that she could have taken. It’s really beside the point.

QUESTION: Well, it’s not just a notional theoretical thing. You have – Howard Berman called for it to be done this morning. I mean, he’s the chairman of the House –

MR. CROWLEY: I just said I’ll take the question.

QUESTION: So wait, just to be clear, so it’s the 18 million that you suspended earlier, plus 11 million in the Millennium Challenge Account? So you’re – so that’s the totality of non-humanitarian aid?

MR. CROWLEY: We have – the numbers today have not changed based on the numbers that we provided recently that we had suspended. All of the aid that we suspended previously, consistent with the law, we have now terminated. Okay.

QUESTION: Okay, but you’ve expanded this --

QUESTION: -- to include the MCC money.

QUESTION: -- to include more money?

QUESTION: That’s it. It’s just that pot, plus MCC.

QUESTION: Well, plus the MCC. There’s future – there’s – the MCC program is a multiyear program. And if they decide to – I mean, this is –

QUESTION: Eleven million dollars was previously suspended.

MR. CROWLEY: Right.

QUESTION: So then 30 million was previously suspended?

MR. CROWLEY: Right.

QUESTION: Nothing new?

MR. CROWLEY: Nothing new. There’s –

QUESTION: Terminated instead of suspended.

MR. CROWLEY: Correct.

QUESTION: What about the money from the MCC in outlying years?

MR. CROWLEY: The money in the outlying years is not affected by this decision, but that is a separate process.

QUESTION: Right. And next week, it could be taken out --

MR. CROWLEY: That will be subject to consideration by the MCC board.

QUESTION: What recommendation is the Secretary of State going to bring to the MCC board next week?

MR. CROWLEY: I’ll let her bring those recommendations, and then we’ll tell you what she did.

QUESTION: P.J., you mentioned that the Secretary in the meeting today with Zelaya also suggested steps to him that he could take to give more guarantees or whatever to the de facto government. What are those?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, obviously, what we have here is a lack of trust on both sides. You have what we believe is the outlines of a fair agreement that would restore constitutional and democratic order to Honduras. What we think we have right now is a situation where both sides have accepted – in the case of President Zelaya, he has accepted the San Jose Accords: The de facto regime has not. Part of their concerns, we believe, are questions about whether President Zelaya would abide by the San Jose Accords if both sides do, in fact, accept them.

And what the Secretary said to President Zelaya is there are things that you can do to create assurances within Honduras that if both sides accept the San Jose Accords formally, that he will in fact, live by them, just as we would expect the de facto regime to accept and then live by what is outlined in --

QUESTION: And what specific steps would those include?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, obviously, part of this also is to bring down the – there’s anxiety within Honduran society. We remain concerned about human rights, intimidation by various – by the police, others, some episodes of violence. And we think that if all sides can bring down the rhetoric, tone down the acrimony, that then that would create a climate where ultimately, more rational actors can prevail.

And we will continue to talk to all of the parties involved, to try to convince them of the seriousness of the steps that we’ve taken. There are real consequences here to Honduras. President Zelaya, in his meeting, talked about the impact that the current situation is having on the Honduran economy. Obviously, the action on visas sends a compelling message to those who have supported the de facto regime: This is going to cost you personally. So we think that this pressure, along with others in the region, within the Arias process within the OAS, we think that is having some effect. But now we’re doing everything that we can to push this process towards a resolution.

QUESTION: How many more people have you identified for the visa revocation?

MR. CROWLEY: I’m not going to get into any particulars. There are specific individuals, and we are in the process of revoking their visas. But as to numbers, who they are, I’m not going to get into --

QUESTION: Well, is it more than four that were already announced?

MR. CROWLEY: Yes.

QUESTION: Okay. So in our --

MR. CROWLEY: Yes. The list includes those who have participated in the coup and those who have supported it.

QUESTION: I just want to make sure it is on top of the four --

MR. CROWLEY: This is in addition to those steps that --

QUESTION: -- that were already announced.

MR. CROWLEY: Fair point. This is an additional list. It is additive to those who have already had that action taken.

QUESTION: In the Secretary’s discussion with President Zelaya, did she, in addition to voicing support for his return, I mean, talk about some of the problems of the – of his administration and policies that led to what people – what led to this coup? I mean, in all of this, you talk about the need for the democratic restore of order, but I’ve never once heard you, like, say anything favorable about Zelaya himself. I mean, you certainly haven’t voiced any support for his rule.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, we are not trying to personalize this. This is about the United States and following the democratic principles that we live by and that the OAS abides by. This is about the United States and, we feel, the importance in the region of restoring democratic, constitutional rule to Honduras and the signal that sends to the region to reinforce --

QUESTION: Okay. But if you put him back – if you put him back in office, the problems that led to his ouster are still going to remain.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, hang on a second. President Zelaya came to office through a democratic process. The President called the action to remove him a coup. The Secretary said it’s a coup. And it is the policy of the United States to do everything in our power to restore President Zelaya to office as a vital component of restoring democratic and constitutional rule in Honduras.

QUESTION: Well, but the people that launched the coup said that he wasn’t ruling democratically or constitutionally. So I mean, if you put him back in office, are you prepared to put pressure on him to rule democratically and constitutionally?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, what we – that’s what – the reason why we supported the Arias process, and it’s the reason why we support the ingredients that include important elements that could help bring Honduran society back together. We recognize that there is a severe fracture within Honduran society, and we are genuinely concerned about the impact that any action that we take – the impact that that would have on the ground. We do not want to have any step that we take precipitate further violence. We are genuinely concerned about this. So we are taking measured steps, but we are sending a clear message to the de facto regime.

But we also should take note – I mean, there is an electoral process that now has started in Honduras. There are, I think, six candidates for president. We will be communicating to those candidates roles that they can play. Because ultimately, this is about getting to January 27, 2010, where you have a new government in place in Honduras, one that has come into office through legitimate means, and one that the people of Honduras can believe in, and one that the people of the United States and the rest of the region can support.

So everything we’re doing here is a means towards that end: How can we take a current situation that is extraordinarily difficult, extraordinarily dangerous, and find a formula that moves us forward towards a legitimate election and a new government? That’s why we supported the Arias process, that’s why we think that the components of the Arias plan are the best way to move forward, and that’s why we continue to – what we told President Zelayas today – sign the San Jose Accords. And what we’re saying to the de facto regime, quite clearly, is do the same thing.

QUESTION: P.J., could I ask --

MR. CROWLEY: Sure.

QUESTION: -- whether there’s been any consideration of drawing down your diplomatic presence down there, and who they are speaking with if they’re not in contact with the de facto government.

MR. CROWLEY: Ambassador Llorens was part of the meeting today, and the Secretary during her discussion explained to President Zelaya why we have – we think that his presence in the capital has, up until now, played a very constructive role. He has been a significant voice for the United States in talking to those in Honduran society on both sides, and we think that he’ll continue to play a very constructive role in trying to help us resolve this situation.

QUESTION: (Inaudible) thanks.

MR. CROWLEY: Yes.

QUESTION: What would it require for the Honduran coup to be labeled a military coup?

MR. CROWLEY: The Secretary did not have to make that judgment today, and what – her actions today don’t forestall making that judgment at some time in the future.

QUESTION: But also if I could follow up with that, Micheletti said that he won’t cave into any international pressure even if it means cutting off the $30 million. So cutting off all aid, which would require the State Department to call it a military coup, if that’s going to pressure them even more, why wouldn’t it be labeled a military coup then?

MR. CROWLEY: She did not have to reach that decision to take the action that she took today. As to what Micheletti takes from this, clearly, this is going to have an impact on the Honduran de facto regime. It’s going to have an impact on those who have supported the coup. And our hope is that as they see the seriousness of purpose, and as they also see that, at this point in time, there’s no way out of this – they, we believe, had the judgment that if they just get to an election – to election day, that this would absolve them of the actions they’ve taken. And we’re saying that based on conditions as they currently exist, we cannot recognize the results of this election. So for the de facto regime, they’re now in a box and they will have to sign on to the San Jose Accords to get out of the box that they’re in.

QUESTION: If I can just follow up with that, the generals who were involved in this coup were graduates trained – received military training and are graduates of the School of Americas, Fort Benning, Georgia, which means if you – I imagine if you had the Department of Defense revoke that, either revoke their diplomas or find some way to get them out of power, that would be workable because they were the ones that are – that orchestrated the coup.

MR. CROWLEY: Well, obviously, we have already taken action regarding military cooperation and military assistance, so this has already had an impact on the Honduran military already. As to what further steps we’ll take – but we are trying to send a clear message to Honduras today.

QUESTION: P.J., when you said we will be communicating to those candidates, the presidential candidates, the roles they can play, what exactly is the role that you would be suggesting?

MR. CROWLEY: I mean, at this point, what’s vitally important is that in order for Honduras to have a restoration of a normal relationship with the United States, a normal relationship with the rest of the region, and a resumption of aid, they’re going to have to produce a government that comes into office through a free, fair, and transparent and democratic process. We’re sending a clear signal to the de facto regime that under the present circumstances we will not recognize the results of the upcoming election under the current circumstances. That forces the de facto regime to contemplate a change. Where they are now is an unacceptable place. We’re trying to get them to recognize that there’s no light at the end of the tunnel here. They will have to make – they’ll have to change course, decide to sign on to the San Jose Accord, reach agreement with President Zelaya under the Arias process, if they have any hope of a normal relationship with the United States.

QUESTION: But the role that the candidates could play is to pressure the government to do that, right?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, but this is the time where various elements of Honduran society need to come back together again and convince the de facto regime that the course that they are on will not get them where they think it will go. So for those who have an interest in and are participating in the democratic process in Honduras, they need to also send a signal to the de facto regime that if they come to office through a process that the de facto regime controls, they will not be recognized as a democratic and constitutional government come November or come January. So they have a stake in a process that the United States, the OAS, and the people of Honduras can support.

We also believe that within the business community there, now that they see that it will be more difficult to do business in the United States or in the region, that there are going to be direct consequences to them. I think they thought that the steps that we had taken were temporary measures and that they would just try to wait out the United States. And we’re saying today, clearly, these are not temporary measures. We now have pressed the stop button. This aid is lost to Honduras for the time being. There’s going to be greater impact on those individuals who are part of the de facto regime and those individuals who support the de facto regime. It’s time for everyone to reassess where they are, and it’s time for the de facto regime to sign on to the San Jose Accords.

QUESTION: P.J., I think maybe my brain is frozen because it’s so cold in here, but can you – you say that this is a clear signal, but the practical effect is maybe they didn’t have the 30 million yesterday and they still don’t have it today, but you don’t think it’s a mixed message by not suspending all non-humanitarian aid? I mean, I don’t see what, you know, more dramatic of a – you know, maybe it’s a little – it’ll happen for a little bit longer. But this government says that it’s prepared to relinquish power to a new government anyway. So I just don’t understand why not cutting all humanitarian aid is not the clearest signal you can send.

MR. CROWLEY: Well – and, Elise, it’s a fair question. But we’re trying to do two things. One is to send a clear message and put as much pressure as we can on the de facto regime. But we still value our relationship with Honduras, and in particular the Honduran people. So we made this judgment some time ago that we will first suspend, and now we have terminated, that assistance directed at the government itself. But we obviously have made a judgment that we need to continue to find ways to support the Honduran people, so there is aid that will continue to flow into Honduras. For HIV/AIDS, for other purposes, child survival, food aid, disaster assistance, we feel that we can deliver that aid to the Honduran people while still trying to isolate and put pressure on the de facto regime.

That’s not a mixed message. We believe in democracy. But we also believe in supporting people in the region and we’re trying to find an effective way – we think we have found the right balance.

Kirit.

QUESTION: Can you tell me what percentage of this – of aid this $30 million is, and can you give us some examples of what is cut in that 30 – in the 30? I understand that 11 --

MR. CROWLEY: I think it’s a fair question. Why don’t you – the next briefers who do the policy work here can get (inaudible).

QUESTION: And then I just want to follow up on Elise’s point, which was that prior to today, the aid was not available to them and it was going to be restarted when they meet a certain criteria. Today, the aid is still not available to them and they still have to meet a certain criteria that I think is the same criteria that it was before you terminated. What’s the change?

MR. CROWLEY: Well, in some cases, this aid potentially expires and will be reprogrammed to other purposes. It does set a higher bar in terms of the process that will be required for us to restart. But I would also make sure that you don’t lose sight of we’ve taken three steps here, and you are focused on the aid, understandably so, but you can also see how the other two steps – and in particular within Honduras, we think that for those who have supported the regime, who think they could support the regime and push President Zelaya out of the country without ramifications, all of a sudden it’s going to be more difficult for them to travel, more difficult for them to do business with others in the region, including the United States.

This is going to have an impact on those who have been giving Micheletti advice up to now – hey, ride this out. And we are showing that there are severe consequences to those who think that they can, and we don’t think they can.

QUESTION: Can I follow up on Kirit’s question just on the amount of the aid that was suspended? Can you --

MR. CROWLEY: I’m going to push all aid questions, if you don’t mind, to the next briefer.

QUESTION: Well, what I’m – here’s what I’m asking, though, because if they aren’t able to answer the question --

MR. CROWLEY: They will be able to answer it.

QUESTION: Okay. Well, you know, then why don’t you hear the question, okay?

MR. CROWLEY: All right. Fair enough, fair enough.

QUESTION: The question is: Can you provide a breakdown of the more than 30 million? What is the total and what are its different components? You know, we’re more than two months after the event, so presumably, the Administration should by now know what are the sums involved.

Secondly, I wanted to ask whether there were concerns within the Administration that a military coup determination would (a), eliminate room for a diplomatic solution, that if you had done that, there wouldn’t be any more space for a diplomatic solution here – i.e. the San Jose Accord – and (b), that if you had made such a determination, there would be a backlash from the Honduran military with which the United States has had longstanding, close and productive ties.

MR. CROWLEY: I’m not going to parse this area from here. I would simply tell you that we were looking backwards at a complex set of facts and the difficulty in understanding precisely what happened and the role that various institutions played as opposed to whether – obviously, we still have this and other steps that we can take in the future as we go forward.

But we recognize that what happened on June 28th, even though it happened weeks ago, it’s still – it’s not your garden variety military coup. And assessing those facts and drawing conclusions from them has been a challenge and – but what we’re trying to do, that – independent of that judgment, there were steps that the Secretary felt she could take today and has taken today in order to apply additional pressure on the de facto regime.

See Daily Press Briefing - September 3 [Part2]

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