The government of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo, through its Immigration Office, informed airline managers that as of Saturday, September 14, entry into Nicaragua is prohibited for diplomats Leopoldo Sahores, Sebastien Sigouin, Elisa Díaz, Carlos Trujillo and Audrey Patrice Marks, representatives of Argentina, Canada, Paraguay, United States and Jamaica, all members of the high-level OAS Commission whose purpose is to dialogue with the regime and seek a negotiated and political solution to the crisis in the country.
The document sent to the station managers of the airlines that operate in the country, signed by Brigadier Commander Juan Emilio Rivas, General Director of Immigration, also indicates that entry is denied to Gonzalo Koncke, chief of staff of the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), and Pablo Sandino Martinez, press officer of this organization.
The office of Immigration makes known that, as of this date, none of the abovementioned persons “are authorized to enter Nicaragua nor can they board their airlines to Nicaragua…”, says the letter.
Before the announcement from Nicaraguan Immigration, the OAS commission was expected to enter the country on Monday to meet with representatives of the Government, the Civic Alliance, National Unity movement, relatives of political prisoners and victims of murder.
A source linked to the high-level commission said they were already notified of the ban on entering the country. Despite the refusal of the regime, the source said they will continue to carry out their work.
On June 28, the Organization of American States (OAS), voted at its general assembly, held in Medellin, Colombia, to create the high-level commission to find a solution to the Nicaragua crisis.
On August 28, the OAS Permanent Council initiated a 75-day countdown before considering the expulsion of the Ortega-Murillo regime from the Inter-American body. This could occur in case the dictators refuse to negotiate a solution to the socio-political crisis of Nicaragua with the ‘high-level commission’.
“If Ortega rejects the commission and does not give it a chance, not letting it do its job of good offices and mediation, then that would be understood as an end to the possibility of continuing with the dialogue. Then they would have to continue with what is stipulated in the Inter-American Democratic Charter, which is the call for a meeting of foreign ministers to harden the sanctions and extend them further,” said former Nicaraguan OAS ambassador Jose Luis Velasquez.
The commission is made up of Carlos Trujillo, representative of the United States in the OAS; Elisa Díaz, delegate of Paraguay, Audrey Marks, representative of Jamaica; Leopoldo Sahores, an Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Argentina, and Sebastian Sigouin, Director of Global Affairs Canada for Central America, Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
There is no release of political prisoners
The pending arrival of the OAS high-level commission also raised expectations about the possible release of the more than 120 political prisoners still being held in the jails of the Ortega dictatorship.
Some political prisoners sent messages to their relatives about a strange transfer of cells in the La Modelo prison system, in Tipitapa. It was thought that the detainees would be freed on the morning of Saturday, September 14, however, no such release occurred.
“It’s airtight, we don’t know anything, we don’t have communication at all. Those of us who didn’t receive calls decided to make an appearance here [at La Modelo],” explained the uncle of Jaime Navarrete, a political prisoner recaptured by the National Police a few months ago.
Upon leaving the prison system some relatives of political prisoners who were called by the prison authorities, confirmed to the media that the communication was for them to make a special visit to their relatives.