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Backstory to the 2021 Honduran Presidential elections

There is a back story to this past Sunday’s Honduran presidential election that for this writer is more noteworthy than the gender(female)and ideology(Leftist) of the victor. President elect Xiomara Castro de Zelaya’s Vice President is the two-time Presidential Candidate Salvador Alejandro César Nasralla Salum and Castro’s principal rival was Nasry Juan Asfura Zablah. Both of these politicians are first generation Palestinian Hondurans.

However, had either been elected President, they would not have been the first politician from that community to have served as President of Honduras. Carlos Roberto Flores Facusse Barjum(1998-2002) accomplished that milestone. At the time of his election, he was the fourth Palestinian Central American to serve as President or Prime Minister during the same time frame—Antonio Saca(El Salvador)and Said Musa, the two-time Prime Minister of Belize.

If one adds to above list Presidents Carlos Menem(two time President of Argentina)Michel Temer(Brazil),Julio Cesar Turbay Ayala(Colombia), Jacobo Majluta(Dominican Republic),Abdala Bucaram and Jamil Mahuad(Ecuador), an observer would find that unlike the political discourse in the United States regarding Palestinian or Middle Eastern immigrants in general , the contributions of several generations of immigrants from that part of the world to the economies, politics and societies of the Spanish and Portuguese speaking Americas have been adaptive, positive, and transformative. They have become civilizers and modernizers in their New World home countries. The Honduran Palestinian community of newly elected President Xiomara Castro de Zelaya is as distinctive as it is highly integrated and economically successful.

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