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Central American Presidents reacted against presence of Los Zetas in the region.

Presidents Colom (Guatemala) Ortega (Nicaragua) Funes (El Salvador) Lobo (Honduras) with former President Zelaya and current Venezuelan Foreign Relations Minister Nicolas Maduro.Nicaragua last night restored relations with the northern neighbor after signing the "Agreement for national reconciliation and consolidation of democracy in Honduras", signed in Cartagena, Colombia with the presence of Honduras president, Porfirio Lobo, and the former president of that country, Manuel Zelaya. This agreement shall be conducted under the auspices and mediation of President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, and Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia. This agreement benefits widely Zelaya, as it ensures, among other things, his return together with its partners and all rights that the Constitution confers. In the negotiations it was agreed that Honduras will return to different international organizations and fora, including the Central American Integration System (SICA) and the Organization of American States (OAS). Note that so far only the President of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega Saavedra, was the one who opposed the reinstatement of Honduras to these bodies, thus delaying the process of Central American integration. The declaration of the CA-4 presidents agreed to promote the reinstatement of Honduras to the OAS and SICA, on the eve of the annual meeting that the latter body will have in El Salvador from next 5 to 7 June.

The presidents of Central American countries -except Costa Rica- today expressed concern over the recent killing of 27 peasants on a farm in northern Guatemala, a fact attributed to the Mexican cartel Los Zetas.

In a joint statement, signed today in Managua by Presidents Alvaro Colom (Guatemala), Mauricio Funes (El Salvador), Porfirio Lobo (Honduras) and Daniel Ortega (Nicaragua), the four Heads of State reiterated their solidarity and support for President Colom (Guatemala). “We express our concern over the slaughter of 27 Guatemalan peasants occurred in recent days in the department (province) of Petén in the hands of the criminal organization known as Los Zetas,” said President Daniel Ortega (Nicaragua) to read the statement in the House of the People (Casa de los Pueblos)  , former presidential palace in Nicaragua´s capital.

In the document, the leaders acknowledged that the lack of security, the impact of organized crime and the consequences of these phenomena in the region, “are the major threats to the people and governments of Central America.”

They also noted that crime is affecting the chances of achieving sustainable economic growth, overcoming poverty and social inequality of people. Also admitted that drug trafficking, illegal arms trafficking, human trafficking and related crimes “are affecting the population and undermine political stability, democratic institutions and government management of the region.”

For these reasons, the Central American heads of state considered a “challenge” the next International Conference to Support the Central American Security Strategy, which is scheduled to be held from 22 to 24 July in Guatemala.