Amnesty International calls Ortega’s presidential candidacy a “reminder of the impunity” in Nicaragua

The NGO Amnesty International (AI) branded the candidacy for the election of incumbent Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega on Tuesday as a “reminder of the prevailing impunity” in the country.

For the organization, Ortega’s permanence as Nicaraguan president would mean an extension of the “serious human rights violations that were committed within the scope of his mandate”.

Amnesty International calls Ortega’s presidential candidacy a “reminder of the impunity” in Nicaragua
Amnesty International calls Ortega’s presidential candidacy a “reminder of the impunity” in Nicaragua

In a statement, the director of AI for the Americas, Erika Guevara, said that during her candidacy, “thousands of victims of human rights abuses continue to await justice for the crimes committed by the authorities under her administration”.

The elections, scheduled for November 7, come amid a serious humanitarian crisis in the country that dates back to April 2018 and has worsened in recent months.

“Maintaining the structures that guaranteed impunity cannot be the basis for building the country’s future,” lamented Guevara, who pointed out that “in order to get out of the crisis it is necessary to stop human rights violations” and those responsible will be brought to justice.

In 2018, the report of the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts on Nicaragua found that the Nicaraguan authorities had committed crimes against humanity. He also pointed out that there are elements to show that these crimes committed are “tolerated, encouraged or ordered by the highest authorities, including the country’s President, who is also the Supreme Chief of the National Police, the highest rank in the institution became”. Command.”

“No person is currently being investigated who is accused of committing these crimes. On the contrary, Daniel Ortega is once again available as a presidential candidate, in whose position he will be immune from any investigation into him,” Guevara denounced.

With this in mind, he has stressed that any state that “has a person charged with these grave acts under its jurisdiction must bring him to justice”. He has made it clear that the international community “cannot stand idly by when a person suspected of committing these crimes is on their territory”.

In the past few months, security forces have arrested around twenty people, including six presidential candidates, student leaders, activists, peasant representatives and other relevant figures.

For Amnesty it is clear that “the road to the elections will be paved with repressive measures that make it impossible for the population to exercise their political rights without fear of reprisals”.

With this in mind, the organization warned against “harassment of human rights defenders, journalists and the media”. “As a result, (…) thousands of people have been forced to leave the country to protect their freedom and integrity, in addition to the more than 100,000 people who have already left the country to protect their lives,” said the Document. .

For its part, the NGO has stressed that the upcoming elections “represent an opportunity to face the legacy of impunity and initiate a process in which the Nicaraguan people have access to justice, truth and redress”.

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