Argentina and Mexico withdraw their envoys following Nicaraguan crackdown | Human rights news

The government of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega arrested 17 opposition figures this month, including five presidential candidates.

Mexico and Argentina have recalled their ambassadors to Nicaragua for consultations in response to President Daniel Ortega’s growing crackdown on the opposition, a joint statement said Monday.

The two countries wish to consult their ambassadors on “the worrying politico-legal measures taken by the Nicaraguan government in recent days which have endangered the well-being and freedom of various opposition figures [including presidential pre-candidates], activists and Nicaraguan businessmen ”, declared their foreign ministries. They want to promote a dialogue with the Ortega government.

Argentina and Mexico will continue to press for “full respect and promotion of human rights” as well as civil and political liberties, the statement said.

Mexico and Argentina broke with others in the region last week by failing to vote for a Resolution of the Organization of American States condemning more than a dozen recent arrests in Nicaragua of key opposition figures.

They offered to help foster dialogue to resolve the situation in the Central American country, which is due to hold the presidential election in November.

Nicaraguan authorities arrested 17 opposition figures this month, including five potential presidential candidates, sparking international condemnation and further US sanctions.

Sunday evening, the journalist and presidential candidate Miguel Mora was arrested at his home for “inciting foreign interference in internal affairs and requesting military intervention”, according to the authorities.

The Nicaraguan government claims the detainees are US-funded “usurpers” to overthrow Ortega.

The 75-year-old ruled Nicaragua from 1979 to 1990, returned to power in 2007 and has won two successive re-elections since then.

He is generally expected to run for a fourth term in the upcoming November election, although he has yet to confirm that he will.

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