HAVANA TIMES – The Nicaragua Nunca+ [“Nicaragua Never again”] Human Rights Collective rebuked the Ortega regime’s arbitrary cancellation of six international NGOs. The move violates the legal constitutional order in Nicaragua, as well as international agreements.
According to the human rights organization, since 2018 the Ortega Murillo regime has cancelled 34 national organizations through the Interior Ministry and the National Assembly, institutions used to rubber-stamp the systematic outrages against civil society organizations. Now the government is attacking the international NGOs working in Nicaragua.
“These demonstrate a pattern of abuse of power, through administrative actions that cancel the exercise of rights, with no defense, violating the Constitutional order in Nicaragua as well as international agreements,” the Collective declared.
In the same way, the human rights advocates criticized the repression exercised against civil society organizations. “They violate the right to free association, attempting to annul any expression that defends and promotes human rights in Nicaragua. We demand an end to the repression.”
Similarly, the Nicaraguan Human Rights Center noted that Ortega and Murillo continue creating conflicts with the world, by closing down international cooperation agencies that have historically supported the Nicaraguan people.
“We condemn and reject this action as one more blow to Nicaraguans’ human rights. We alert the international human rights organizations,” they indicated.
The six organizations closed were: Oxfam Intermon (Spain); Oxfam IBIS (Denmark); Diakonia (Sweden); The National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (US); International Republican Institute (US); and Helping Hands, the Warren William Pagel M.D. Foundation (US).
The Interior Ministry justified application of the “Law against money laundering, financing terrorism and financing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction,” as well as the “General law for legal non-profit entities”.
The cancelled NGOs offered aid projects in poor and remote regions of the country in areas of education, human rights, health, nutrition, food security, housing, sustainable family farming, environmental matters, climate change or access to water.
According to data from the Secretariat of NGOs, there were 32 international NGOs working in Nicaragua up until October 2020. These organizations together represented US $25.5 million dollars per year and benefitted 550,000 people.