June 3, 2021 2:07 PM | With information from EFE
15 minutes. Democratic Senator Bob Menéndez, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, believes that “it is time” to use the tools provided by the US Congress to sanction those who undermine democracy in Nicaragua.
In a statement sent to Efe, Menéndez condemned the “authoritarian actions” of President Daniel Ortega against the opposition Cristiana Chamorro. The leader received a disqualification for the next elections for an alleged case of money laundering. He is currently under house arrest.
In the opinion of Senator Bob Menéndez, of Cuban origin, the Nicaraguan president shows “an absolute disregard for the rule of law and the cornerstone of any democracy: free, fair and transparent elections. “
Daniel Ortega’s authoritarian actions against a political opponent show utter disregard for the rule of law & the bedrock of democracy – free & transparent elections. The int’l community must develop a coordinated plan to pressure the Ortega regime to hold democratic elections. https://t.co/WFCNBYhcQF
– Senate Foreign Relations Committee (@SFRCdems) June 3, 2021
“Seeing how the desperate Ortega regime each time is more determined to become the third dictatorship in Latin AmericaI am more committed than ever to working with Secretary Blinken and the Biden administration to ensure democratic elections that allow Nicaraguans to take control of their own political processes and economic opportunities, “he added.
Menéndez recalled that in 2018 “Congress enacted political tools to implement selective sanctions against Nicaraguan officials that undermine democracy, perpetuate corruption and violate human rights.” “It is time to use them,” he said in his statement.
Nicaragua moves away from free elections
Secretary of State Antony Blinken also referred to the situation in Nicargua. From Costa Rica, this Wednesday he affirmed that the country is in “opposite direction” to what can be a fair election and free.
In an interview with the newspaper La Nación, Blinken assured that the situation in Nicaragua worries the United States and the hemisphere in general.
The Secretary of State expressed in the interview that “the events of the last 24 hours give even more evidence of this”.
Cristiana Chamorro Barrios, 67, is the daughter of former president Violeta Barrios, who beat Ortega in the 1990 elections. Her father is the journalist Pedro Joaquín Chamorro, a critic of the Anastasio Somoza dictatorship and assassinated in 1978.
Chamorro Barrios is vice president of the Managua daily La Prensa. Furthermore, he is the Nicaraguan opposition figure most likely to win the November elections in Nicaragua. In these elections, Ortega seeks a fifth consecutive term.
The opponent was disqualified from participating in that contest. The ruling issued this Wednesday Chamorro is not in full enjoyment of his civil and political rights due to an open investigation for alleged money laundering in a foundation he runs.