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Ortega Lobbies to Prevent Application of Democratic Charter

Foreign Minister Moncada asks his counterparts of Latin America not to vote for sanctions on the Ortega- Murillo government

In a letter signed by Foreign Minister Denis Moncada, the dictatorship of Daniel Ortega asks the governments of Latin America and the Caribbean not to support the initiative of the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, to hold a session of an urgent nature, in which the application of the Democratic Charter on Nicaragua would be put to a vote.

“In my capacity as Foreign Minister of the Government of Nicaragua, I kindly request the support of your governments so that the requests of the OAS General Secretary, Luis Almagro, related to the application of article 20 of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, are not approved by the Organization of American States,” reads the letter that consists of 21 pages and was sent on January 1, 2019.

According to Foreign Minister Moncada, Daniel Ortega was legally elected in 2016 under international observation and governed in peace until April of 2018, when “opposition sectors sponsored and financed from abroad” attempted to carry out a coup d’état.

Omitting in its entirety the report that a few weeks ago presented by the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts (GIEI), in which the Government of Daniel Ortega is held responsible for having committed crimes against humanity against citizens who protested against his Social Security reforms.  

The letter further states, “the Government of Nicaragua, acting in good faith, convened a National Dialogue” and this became a “media event.” Ortega was in fact forced to dialogue by the demonstrations he had repressed, because by that date, May 15, 2018, there were more than 30 dead and a large number of wounded, and there were roadblocks throughout the country.

“Almagro wants to manipulate the Democratic Charter”

The message sent by Foreign Minister Moncada disqualifies Luis Almagro, because it presents him as wanting to manipulate the Democratic Charter to support groups attempting a coup against the State of Nicaragua.

“The government of Nicaragua considers the initiative of Secretary General Almagro illegal, devoid of legal grounds and violates the principles of the OAS Charter, the UN Charter and international law,” he continues.

Until several months ago Almagro refused to call the Government of Daniel Ortega a dictatorship and on many occasions was accused of being an accomplice to the acts that were being committed for years. In May of 2018 he was questioned during a panel held at George Washington University, in Washington, D.C., and he said: “what you want are antidemocratic variables to get rid of Daniel Ortega, but that is not a path that we will endorse. I am sorry.” Now he is the one promoting this initiative.

“If application of the Democratic Charter is approved, said Moncada, the Organization of American States (OAS) will be delegitimized as a regional body, because it would again become an “organization that violates the world legal order as it was in previous decades, in which it served even to legalize armed interventions in the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean.”

Furthermore, he affirms that Article 20 of the Democratic Charter can only be applied if “the government of the affected member state cannot request the meeting of the Permanent Council because there has been ‘an alteration to the constitutional order that seriously affects the democratic order,’ that is to say, an accomplished coup d’état that has overthrown a democratic government, which has not happened in Nicaragua.”

Although Ortega has not publically referred to the sanctions applied by the Government of the United States, such as the Nica Act and sanctions on Rosario Murillo, this letter constitutes a desperate measure to prevent further isolation.

“Ortega overestimated his capacity to handle the crisis, and at this point, with this (GIEI) report, we can see that the government’s coup d’état discourse that had been circulating is being undone,” assured the former OAS ambassador, Jose Luis Velasquez, last week on the program “Esta Semana.”

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