Two opposition leaders were arrested in Nicaragua who wanted to compete against President Daniel Ortega in the elections at the beginning of November. Four possible Challengers from Ortega are now in prison.
Félix Maradiaga and Juan Sebastián Chamorro arrested yesterday are suspected of crimes against the state. They would have devised ‘terrorist and disruptive actions’, financed by foreign countries.
Chamorro is a member of a prominent Nicaraguan family and a cousin of Cristiana Chamorro, who was arrested last week. She‘s been placed under house arrest.
Last weekend, former ambassador to the United States Arturo Cruz Sequeira was also arrested. He stays in custody for at least three months, has ruled a judge.
The Left Ortega has been in power in the Central American country since 2007, after being the president between 1985 and 1990. In 2018, major social protests broke out against his reign, which he had precipitated with hard hands.
America demands release
A director of human rights organization Human Rights Watch says he’s never seen anything like this in 30 years. “Ortega wants to be as Stroesnner,” he writes on Twitter. Alfredo Stroessner was a dictator in Paraguay between 1954 and 1989.
According to the US, the arrests confirm that Ortega is a dictator “and that the international community has no choice but to treat him as such”. The US and also the EU have imposed sanctions on high-ranking members of the regime.
The top American diplomat for Latin America Julie Chung demands that all detainees be released immediately.