ABC's Sunlen Miller and Kirit Radia reports: After discussing the coup in Honduras during the trilateral summit with his counterparts of Canada and Mexico, President Obama today took on critics who say that the US has not done enough to restore power in the country after the overthrow of Honduran President Zelaya.
“The same critics who say that the United States has not intervened enough in Honduras are the same people who say that we're always intervening and the Yankees need to get out of Latin America. You can't have it both ways.”
As Mr. Obama’s motorcade rode into the city of Guadalajara to meet with Mexican President Calderon, Sunday he was greeted by people lined up in the streets applauding and cheering, yet one sign read, “Yankee, go home.”
The President has received criticism since the overthrow of Zelaya from leftists within Latin America who say that the US has not gone far enough.
Just last Zelaya was also critical of US efforts to return him to power, saying Washington could "tighten its fist" on the de facto regime. The US has backed negotiations headed by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias which, so far, have failed to resolve the impasse.
President Obama said today that the US has been very clear that they believe Zelaya was removed from office illegally and that he should return to power. The administration has said in the past though that the US will not take unilateral action in the region .
“If these critics think that it's appropriate for us to suddenly act in ways that in every other context they consider inappropriate, then I think what that indicates is that maybe there's some hypocrisy involved in their — their approach to U.S.-Latin American relations that — that certainly is not going to guide my administration's policies.”
Canadian Prime Minster Harper agreed with Obama’s characterization. “If I were an American, I would be really fed up with this kind of hypocrisy,” Harper said.
-Sunlen Miller and Kirit Radia