Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega has decided to side with the controversial and cruel Russian president Putin, who initiated the most dangerous war in recent years of Europe. This shows the character of the Latin American ruler and the dangers it brings to the region.

Nicaragua, nothing has changed

By: Latin American Committee, ISHR

Drafted on April 26th, 2022. Posted on May 24th, 2022.

Four years ago, in Nicaragua, the spark of a spontaneous political rebellion began to spread out across the small Central American country. Since then, Ortega has been imposing ruthless repression and dismantling all democratic institutions. As each day passes by more democratic Nicaraguans are feeling suffocated and oppressed.

Ortega has just cancelled the legal status of 25 organizations: among them, the oldest human rights organization: the Permanent Commission of Human Rights (PCHR).

What else will Ortega do to leave all Nicaraguans disenfranchised?

No investigation about the crimes committed by the Sandinistas -in the last four years- has been initiated. PCHR, the human rights organization was deprived, by the government, of its legal status. In a nutshell: The rule of law is long gone in Nicaragua. Impunity prevails with no possibility of change. The opposition groups find themselves with their hands tied. Is cohabitation with the leftist tyrannies a fact we must accept?

The United Nations, the Organization of American States and other independent human rights groups have tried to go to Nicaragua to carry out a thorough investigation in locus over alleged human right violations. But all efforts have been vain. The Sandinistas do not even allow any member of the ad-hoc investigation committees arrive in Nicaragua.

The events taking place in Nicaragua lead us to assume that in the Americas -once a Marxist-Leninist regime sets in- we all have to live with a new dictatorship, just as it was done with Cuba, and later with Venezuela?

Human right violations continue to happen in Nicaragua since 2018 (and they happened too in no lesser degree since Ortega assumed office in 2007). Dictatorships, with the passing of years, tend to become a threat to its neighbors as well. In first place, they bring about huge waves of refugees. It means that in one way or another, the consequences of living side by side with repugnant regimes will eventually imply high costs and no benefits. So, why the does international community have to let thing get worse in order to speak up and take some action in order to propitiate more law-abiding regimes?

Geographically speaking, Nicaragua is not another Cuba: it has terrestrial borders and that will most likely affect Honduras and Costa Rica. Consequently, the interruption of transport in any country of the region, due to political turnmoil, is detrimental to most of the inter-regional commerce.

It is true moderate-leftist governments are springing up in the region -in México, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, and likewise will probably happen in Brazil- but these regimes are not, thus far, a serious threat to its neighbours as it is the case with Cuba, Venezuela or Nicaragua.

The Ukraine-war factor is opening the eyes of Latin American voters in the region who see that Marxist regimes are a real failure and a big threat to their livelihoods. Who wants to have a Russia-affiliated regime across the street? It poses a lot of risks and constitutes a serious menace to any democratic country.

With the events taking place in Ukraine, Palestine, Syria, Afghanistan, the Human Right organizations are quite busy by now. But in Nicaragua, as long as six-and-a-half millions of people are asking loud for justice, demands for international actions to counter Ortega’s cruel policies are urgently needed.

Ortega made things worse by placing himself on the side of Putin –the butcher of Moscow. That fact alone should spark the interest of all decent Western countries to confront the Nicaraguan regime. Ortega now knows he is alone and that Putin is currently so busy as not to distract his attention helping a petit dictator whose hands are filled with blood.

The Nicaraguan people are lonely in its tough struggle against a repugnant tyrant. No question, the Ukrainian people deserves all the attention and help from the Western world. But Nicaragua is not less significant as to be swallowed by a criminal ruler who thinks he can get away with it.

It is so unfair remaining idly as others are being deprived of their most basic rights. Justice must be done.

Read the commentary of ISHR Nicaragua on the situation in Nicaragua