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Friday, January 21, 2022

Nicaragua, presidential election, starts Daniel Ortega. Dissidents call for a boycott

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Groups representing the exiled Nicaraguans are calling for a boycott of the country’s Sunday presidential election. Daniel Ortega, accused of authoritarianism, is competing in them and will run for the fourth term of the head of state. The election process in Nicaragua has been condemned by the Organization of American States, the European Union and the United States.

Dissent groups in Costa Rica have signed a declaration calling for a boycott of the elections, in which Daniel Ortega’s victory would have secured him a third consecutive presidential term. “We want the streets of Nicaragua to be empty on Sunday. We should now demonstrate the determination and courage that accompanied us during the protests of 2018 by staying at home to show our opposition to the ruling dictatorship,” they appealed.

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“Pulpits Become A Trench Against Daniel Ortega’s Regime”

One of the most vocal critics of the Ortega regime inside the country is the clergy. “Pulpits have become a trench against the regime of Daniel Ortega. In a country where speaking out against a president’s excesses can mean imprisonment – which has happened to many oppositionists – Nicaraguans see parishes as a respite from censorship. Priests urge parishioners not to participate in what the opposition defines. farce “- announced the Spanish daily” El Pais “on Friday.

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The rift in the relationship between the Church and the government occurred unexpectedly in 2018, when bishops backed mass protests against the social security reform that was being introduced. “Ortega thought he would have bishops on his side, but the bishops sided with the people,” the newspaper reported, citing an anonymous source close to the Nicaraguan clergy.

Posters calling for a boycott of Sunday’s elections in NicaraguaPAP / EPA / Jeffrey Arguedas

“Reign of Terror” in Nicaragua

So far, Ortega’s seven rivals, accused of, inter alia, money laundering or high treason have been imprisoned. The gradual rise in the authoritarian tendencies of the former Marxist militant who helped overthrow the US-backed dictatorship of General Anastasio Somoza Garcia, peaked in the 2018 protests, when demonstrators protesting against changes to the social security system began calling on the president to resign. As a result of the brutal reaction of the Nicaraguan law enforcement services, more than 300 people were killed and hundreds more arrested. The events led to over 130,000 people leaving the country. people – pointed out Alex Zamora, a member of the opposition Blue and White National Unity.

Daniel OrtegaJORGE TORRES / EPA / PAP

The Organization of American States (OAS) condemned the electoral process in Nicaragua on Wednesday, saying Ortega had “trampled on all the rules of democracy.” The Inter-American Human Rights Commission, an organ of the OAS, said in October that Nicaragua has become a “police state” in which Ortega, after coming to power in 2007, “established a reign of terror, suspended basic civil rights, and is conducting a systematic attack on civil rights.”

The head of EU diplomacy, Josep Borrell, called the Nicaraguan president a “dictator” on Tuesday, while US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called the upcoming elections “a fraud without credibility”. Both the European Union and the United States have imposed sanctions and visa restrictions on officials in the Nicaraguan state administration.

Main photo source: PAP / EPA / Jeffrey Arguedas



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