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López Arellano, Oswaldo

Oswaldo López Arellano (ōsvä´dō lō´pās ärāyä´nō), 1921–2010, president of Honduras (1963–71, 1972–75). An army colonel, he led the violent coup that ousted (Oct., 1963) President Ramón Villeda Morales. In 1965 he was selected as president by a constituent assembly. He reversed most of Villeda's liberal economic policies and temporarily restored financial stability until the serious five-day war with El Salvador in 1969. He engineered the national unity plan under which Ramón Cruz was elected president in 1971. As commander of the armed forces under President Cruz, López Arellano retained enormous power, with the constitutional right to ignore presidential orders. He ousted President Cruz in Dec., 1972, and was himself ousted (1975) after being implicated in a bribery scandal.

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