There were chaotic scenes in Honduras’s congress after a brawl broke out between members of president-elect Xiomara Castro’s party during the swearing in of a new congressional president.
Members of Ms Castro’s leftist Libre Party fought among themselves after congressman Jorge Calix was elected as congress president instead of Luis Redondo.
Ms Castro had earlier agreed with coalition partner the Honduras Saviour Party (PSH) that Mr Redondo would be elected for the position. However, around 20 rebel Libre Party members voted against Mr Redondo.
Amid cries of “traitors” and “Xiomara”, angry politicians forced their way onto the podium where Mr Calix was being sworn in.
Mr Calix was forced to flee after the congressmen started to throw punches.
This was the first time Honduras‘s 128-member congress was sitting since it was elected in November 2021.
“The betrayal is complete,” Ms Castro said on Twitter after the brawl.
Ms Castro was voted into power on 28 November in an election that saw the country’s first woman president elected, bringing an end to the National Party’s 12-year rule.
She won the election with support from PSH, whose leader Salvador Nasralla ended his presidential campaign and endorsed Ms Castro in October.
Part of the deal with Mr Nasralla was that someone from his party would be appointed as the new president of congress.
Ms Castro is due to be officially sworn in on 27 January, along with other senior officials, including the new congressional president, in a ceremony which will be attended by guests including US Vice President Kamala Harris.