World

New Honduran president sworn-in urging US to continue support for anti-drug effort

  • Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, kisses his wife Ana Rosalinda de Hernandez after his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. Hernandez faces many challenges president since Honduras has one of the highest murder rates in the world and well as being one of the poorest countries in the Americas. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)

    Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, kisses his wife Ana Rosalinda de Hernandez after his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. Hernandez faces many challenges president since Honduras has one of the highest murder rates in the world and well as being one of the poorest countries in the Americas. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)  (The Associated Press)

  • Honduras President-elect Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, is fitted with the presidential sash by Mauricio Oliva, President of the National Congress, during his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)

    Honduras President-elect Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, is fitted with the presidential sash by Mauricio Oliva, President of the National Congress, during his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)  (The Associated Press)

  • Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, and his wife Ana Rosalinda wave after his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)

    Honduras' President Juan Orlando Hernandez, left, and his wife Ana Rosalinda wave after his swearing in ceremony as new president in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Monday, Jan. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco)  (The Associated Press)

Conservative Juan Orlando Hernandez has been sworn in as president of Honduras after urging the United States to continue its support for counter-narcotics operations.

The 46-year-old lawyer said he would follow a policy of "zero tolerance" against violent crime and drug-trafficking.

"Let me be clear: time has run out for the criminals," he said.

Hernandez says the U.S. must recognize its responsibility for Honduras' homicide statistics, the world's highest for a country not at open war, because the vast majority of killings are linked to the south-to-north drug trade that uses Honduran territory as a transit point.

Hernandez replaces fellow conservative Porfirio Lobo, who took office in 2010 amid a crisis set off by the ousting of leftist Manuel Zelaya.