Joe Biden has rejected recent Nicaraguan elections in which President Daniel Ortega secured the fourth consecutive term as ‘pantomime’.
US President Joe Biden signs law an account calls for more sanctions and other sanctions against Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega’s government over the weekend secure a controversial fourth consecutive term.
Sunday’s elections followed a month-long government repression during which dozens of opposition leaders, including seven presidential hopefuls, were arrested and others forced into exile.
The so-called RENACER law, signed by Biden on Wednesday, “imposes sanctions on the government of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, to curb multilateral bank lending and to target regime corruption,” the White House said in a statement. statement.
The account was adopted earlier this month in the U.S. House of Representatives after being approved by the full Senate in August.
It calls for sanctions against Nicaraguana who are held responsible for unfair elections, increased coordination of such measures with the European Union and Canada, and expanded U.S. oversight of international lending to Managua.
“Proud to see how the US Ortega’s tyrannical tactics are in line with targeted action and our unwavering support for those who call for freedom and basic rights,” said the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, chaired by Democrat Bob Menendez, who introduced bill, said on Twitter.
The White House announcement comes when members of the Organization of American States (OAS) met in Guatemala for a previously scheduled meeting where the US is working with other countries on what they hope will be a strong resolution against Ortega.
The Sandinista leader, who ruled Nicaragua from 1979 to 1990 before returning to power in 2007, mocked his American critics as “Yankee imperialists” on Monday night, accusing them of trying to undermine Nicaragua’s election process.
Ortega and his wife, Rosario Murillo, who also serves as vice president, received 76 percent of the vote, the Supreme Electoral Council (CSE) said late Monday after a preliminary count of the ballots.
Cuba, Venezuela and Russia offered Ortega their support, but legal groups, as well as the US, UK, Spain, Costa Rica and other nations, reject the elections as a scam. Praying on Sunday accused Ortega and Murillo of orchestrating a “pantomime election that was not free or fair”.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also said earlier this week that the country would consider additional sanctions and other measures “to promote accountability to those who are complicit in supporting the Ortega-Murillo government’s undemocratic actions”.
A State Department official did not want to elaborate on sanctions in the works, the Reuters news agency reported. A U.S. government source said last week that initial targets were likely to be individuals, security forces and government-owned companies.
Political analysts have question mark however, increasing isolation will force Ortega’s hand, or run the risk of exacerbating an already dire economic situation in Nicaragua and inciting migration.
More than 103,600 people have since left the country mass-anti-government protests broke out in 2018. At least 300 people have been killed in the ensuing government crackdown on protesters, while more than 1,600 others have been arrested, according to a report by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
The Ortega government has been accused of increasing authoritarianism since the 2018 protests, but the Nicaraguan president has defended his actions and accused his opponents of being part of a US-backed effort to remove him from power.