A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent shot and killed a suspected drug trafficker over the weekend during an operation conducted by Honduran security forces that resulted in the seizure of several hundred kilos of cocaine, a U.S. Embassy spokesman said.
The suspect was killed Saturday in the operation, which also left four other people wounded.
"A suspected drug trafficker tried to draw a weapon, so the DEA agent fired on the drug trafficker to protect his own life," embassy spokesman Stephen Posivak told Efe.
"Several people were unloading cocaine from a plane at a landing strip" when police backed by helicopters arrived, Posivak said.
Honduran authorities and DEA agents seized 360 kilos of cocaine in the operation in Ahuas, a district in the Caribbean province of Gracias a Dios, and arrested four suspects.
The government sent a team "of the highest level to the place where the incident occurred to conduct the necessary investigation in a prompt and transparent manner," Security Minister Pompeyo Bonilla said.
Honduras will continue to conduct these operations in the area with the support of "DEA officials who are specialists on drug trafficking," Bonilla said.
Four Misquito Indians died in the Caribbean region of Honduras on May 11 in a joint operation conducted by the DEA and the Central American country's security forces.
The U.S. government said on May 17 that the DEA agents who took part in the operation did not fire any shots.
"In this operation, the DEA was involved only in a support role. We did not use force. No agent of the United States fired any weapon," U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.
Honduran Foreign Minister Arturo Corrales said on May 18 in Washington that Honduran officers opened fire during the joint operation, not the DEA agents.
Honduran police and military personnel seized more than 22 tons of cocaine in 2011 during several operations in the Caribbean region coordinated with the U.S. Coast Guard. EFE