TEGUCIGALPA – Honduran President Manuel Zelaya said July 27 that he is “very pleased” by Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez’s request for forgiveness from Honduran Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez for having called him a “parrot” and an “imperialist clown.”
Following Chávez’s apology, Zelaya, who seems to be forging increasingly tighter relationships with the leftist leader in recent months, said he felt “very grateful for the asking of forgiveness” – an act he referred to as a “noble” and “historic.”
Chávez’s comments came July 23 following the publication of an interview with Rodríguez in the Salvadoran daily Hoy in which the Catholic Cardinal said Chávez “thinks he is a god,” and called for an opening of dialogue within Venezuela.
Zelaya said that Rodríguez later told him he hadn’t meant to cause a scandal.
Chávez, meanwhile, offered an apology July 26, saying he was sorry if he offended Rodríguez with his comments, and invited the priest to visit Venezuela to “come see the truth.”
Zelaya said the relations between Honduras and Venezuela had not suffered as a result of last week’s exchange.