Friends of Nicaragua Call for Danish Gov. to Take Action

Danish solidarity workers back in the 1980s in Nicaragua. Photo: IHNCA

HAVANA TIMES – Danish friends of Nicaragua took the initiative to send an appeal to their Government to speak out against the critical situation in Nicaragua today. The document was signed by 200 Danish people with different ties to the Central American country in crisis.

PRESS RELEASE

The Danish Government can, if it wishes, do something to help the political prisoners in Nicaragua. To that aim, two-hundred Danes have sent this urgent appeal (below) to the Danish Government.

These are people who have ties with Nicaragua. They are former Danish ambassadors in Nicaragua, former secretary-generals of international NGOs, former and current politicians, writers, journalists, and last but not least, Danes who have worked on development projects in Nicaragua as advisors, brigade members, aid workers.

One of the over 170 political prisoners in Nicaragua has already perished. Therefore, international pressure needs to be turned up against the Nicaraguan Government. Now! Before we see any more deaths.

The appeal to the Danish Government has been sent to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, Foreign Minister, Jeppe Kofod, and to Development Minister Flemming Møller Mortensen.

Below is the full text:

Freedom for our political prisoners.

Appeal to the Danish Government

WE DEMAND FREEDOM FOR POLITICAL PRISONERS IN NICARAGUA

We, Nicaragua’s Danish friends, are sadly watching events unfold in Nicaragua. Things are going from bad to worse. There are currently hundreds of political prisoners in poor, foul, physically and mentally-destructive conditions. The regime has imprisoned them for… criticizing the Government. For speaking out against them, mobilizing against them, protesting against them.

The Danish Government needs to send a message loud and clear, with a direct appeal to the Nicaraguan Government, headed by President Daniel Ortega and Vice-President Rosario Murillo (his wife), demanding freedom for every political prisoner and offering asylum in Denmark to any political prisoner who wants it.

For decades, Denmark supported Nicaragua’s recovery after the struggle against the Somoza dictatorship, which was overthrown in 1979. The Danes’ international solidarity and aid to the new Nicaragua was plentiful. Billions of Danish krones came to the Central American country in support from the State (DANIDA), the union movement, political parties, NGOs and many other civil-society organizations.

Hundreds and hundreds of Danes (mostly young people) traveled to Nicaragua over the years to help on construction, education, health and agricultural projects, and many more, for brief or long periods of time. Nicaragua made progress. They were better times with democracy, freedom, social wellbeing, education and health care.

That’s all over now. The former liberation hero in the fight against Somoza’s dictatorship, Daniel Ortega, and his family are now ruling the country with an iron fist, just like the dictatorship he helped to bring down did. A civil uprising in April 2018 was brutally repressed. Ever since then, laws have been introduced so the regime can take strong measures against any form of political opposition. Just speaking out against the regime is considered treason.

Leaders of civil society organizations and poltiical parties have been imprisoned and are currently being sentenced to many years behind bars, in closed-door trials. The Government has total control of the courts. Political prisoners include young students who took part in the 2018 civil uprising. There are also leaders from other political parties, the most internationally well-known being Dora Maria Tellez, who fought side by side with Daniel Ortega in the FSLN, in the armed struggles against the Somoza dictatorship. She is now facing 8 years in prison for criticizing… the Ortega-Murillo regime.

Yes, Denmark is a small country. It doesn’t take up a lot of space on the map. But it once had an important role in Nicaragua. And Nicaragua holds an important place for many Danes. This is why we are making this appeal to the Danish Government: Raise your voice and publicly demand the immediate release of political prisoners, the withdrawal of false accusations against them, and to stop the scandalous trials against them. And to offer asylum to the political prisoners in Denmark.

The Danish Government can, if it wishes, do something to help political prisoners in Nicaragua. As a result, two-hundred Danes have sent this urgent appeal (attached) to the Danish Government. These are people who have some kind of relationship with Nicaragua. They are former Danish ambassadors in Nicaragua, former secretary-generals of international NGOs, former and current politicians, writers, journalists, and last but not least, Danes who have worked on development projects in Nicaragua as advisors, brigade members, and aid workers.

One of the over 170 political prisoners in Nicaragua has already perished. Therefore, international pressure needs to be turned up against the Nicaraguan Government. Now! Before we see any more deaths.

The appeal to the Danish Government has been sent to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, the minister of Foreign Affairs, Jeppe Kofod, and to the minister of Develoment Flemming Møller Mortensen

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Read more from Nicaragua here on Havana Times.



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