EU international coverage chief blasts Nicaragua’s Ortega forward of vote

Josep Borrell says the November 7 presidential elections are ‘fake’ and solely designed to maintain Daniel Ortega in energy.

The European Union’s international coverage chief has blasted Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega as a “dictator” who’s overseeing “fake” elections, because the vote on Sunday comes after a months-long crackdown on opposition leaders and presidential hopefuls.

Josep Borrell on Tuesday described the electoral course of within the Central American nation as “fake”, including that it solely goals to “keep the dictator [Ortega] in power”.

“Mr Ortega has occupied himself imprisoning all the political contenders who have presented themselves to run in these elections and we cannot expect that this process will yield a result we can consider legitimate,” Borrell informed reporters from Peru’s capital, Lima.

Borrell, who’s on a tour of Latin America, added that “the situation in Nicaragua is one of the most serious in the Americas at the moment”.

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega is looking for a fourth consecutive time period in workplace [Honduras Presidency/Handout via Reuters]

The feedback come amid rising criticism of Ortega’s dealing with of the November 7 elections, by which the longtime chief is looking for a controversial fourth consecutive time period in workplace.

Some 40 opposition figures – amongst them seven presidential hopefuls – have been detained since June in what rights teams and worldwide observers have decried as a marketing campaign aiming to ensure Ortega’s re-election. Some have been charged with treason or cash laundering.

The Nicaraguan authorities has defended its actions, saying “usurpers” backed by the United States had been looking for to topple Ortega.

But critics say the fees have been trumped up and designed to sideline them from operating within the election. Many different activists have been pressured into exile in Costa Rica.

Cristina Chamorro, 67, who was extensively seen as a favorite to defeat Ortega, was detained on June 2 as a part of an alleged cash laundering investigation.

In a report (PDF) revealed final week, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) stated the circumstances in Nicaragua usually are not conducive to “free, fair, transparent and plural elections”.

“The IACHR has noted the intensification of the repression of the political opposition, social leaders, human rights defenders, and journalists, especially through arbitrary arrests and criminalization on baseless charges,” the report acknowledged.

In a current report, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights stated the circumstances in Nicaragua usually are not conducive to ‘free, fair, transparent and plural elections’ [Maynor Valenzuela/Reuters]

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken additionally has accused Ortega of presiding over a “sham election devoid of credibility”.

The US and the EU have each imposed sanctions and visa restrictions on Nicaraguan officers.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Facebook stated it shut down a “troll farm” made up of a whole bunch of accounts run by the Nicaraguan authorities that had been spreading pro-government and anti-opposition content material.

Nicaragua is also scheduled to carry regional and municipal elections on November 21. Borrell stated he hoped opposition events would be capable of take part.

The EU is predicted to ship observers to observe Sunday’s elections – the primary time in 15 years.