Honduran new gov't declares war on crime

13:55, January 30, 2010      

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The new government of Honduran President Porfirio Lobo Friday started a war on crime by launching police operations in major cities of the country.

"In the coming 190 days we are going to pressure the criminals," Security Minister Oscar Alvarez was quoted by local media as saying.

But Alvarez asked the people not to expect miracles overnight.

On Thursday, one day after Lobo was inaugurated, Alvarez led a crime crackdown campaign and arrested more than 50 people in some 10 districts of Tegucigalpa .

Police seized a RPG-7 grenade launcher, shotguns and rifles during the campaign.

Alvarez served as security minister during the government of Ricardo Maduro, 2002-2005.

One of Lobo's campaign promises was to bring security to Honduras. In 2009 alone, 5,253 homicides, 112 kidnappings, 1,345 car thefts and 27 bank robberies were reported, according to official data.

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