UN Human Rights Council condemns abuse in Nicaragua - InfoNews

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UN Human Rights Council condemns abuse in Nicaragua

FILE - In this May 16, 2018 file photo, Nicaragua's President Daniel Ortega speaks at the opening of a national dialogue, in Managua, Nicaragua. Ortega spoke in a nationally televised address on Monday, May 18, 2020, and blamed health monitoring measures taken by Costa Rica for his country's decision to close their two border crossings. The dispute boiled over since Costa Rica began May 8 testing all truck drivers entering the country for COVID-19. (AP Photo/Alfredo Zuniga, File)
June 19, 2020 - 12:41 PM

MANAGUA, Nicaragua - The United Nations Human Rights Council condemned what it called serious human rights violations in Nicaragua and urged President Daniel Ortega to cease such tactics Friday.

The council approved the resolution with a vote of 24 to 4 with 19 abstentions at its seat in Geneva, Switzerland. The decision was celebrated by the Nicaraguan opposition.

The resolution said the council “expresses grave concern at the continuing reports of serious human rights violations and abuses since April 2018, and the persisting disproportionate use of force by the police to repress social protests, and acts of violence by armed groups, as well as reports of ongoing unlawful arrests and arbitrary detentions, harassment, and torture and sexual and gender-based violence in detention.”

The Nicaraguan opposition coalition Blue and White National Unity says that at least 60 political prisoners remain encarcerated.

The council also called for the independence of the judiciary and the human rights prosecutor’s office and for a plan to investigate reported human rights abuses since 2018.

In April 2018, the government and its supporters violently put down protests against changes to the social security system. The protests quickly expanded to other complaints against the government and were suppressed by police and civilian paramilitaries. At least 328 people died in the violence, according to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

The Nicaraguan government did not immediately respond to the resolution, but the opposition applauded it.

Félix Maradiaga, member of the Blue and White National Unity coalition’s political committee, said the resolution marked “a step in the right direction.”

The opposition Sandinista Renovation Movement said the resolution “reaffirms the international isolation of the regime, as demonstrated by the fact that no country in the Americas or Europe voted against it.”

News from © The Associated Press, 2020
The Associated Press

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