Christian Chamorro Barrios, the opposition figure in Nicaragua With a greater probability of running and winning the November elections, in which President Daniel Ortega seeks a new reelection, he woke up on Thursday incommunicado, under police surveillance and under house arrest, informed sources close to the political leader.
The opposition woman, accused by the Public Ministry for a case of alleged money laundering and for the one who has been disqualified by the Justice to participate in the electoral contest under the argument of “not being in full enjoyment of her civil and political rights,” she is incommunicado and isolated, the Chamorro press team told the EFE news agency. Neighborhoods.
The police broke into Chamorro’s house in Managua and ordered a security cordon around the building. His communication team promised more details when they have more information.
The official Twitter account of the daughter of former president Violeta Barrios de Chamorro (1990-1997), @chamorrocris, is still active, although without posting messages since Tuesday night, when she wrote: “I am not an official candidate and they intend to inhibit me. They are afraid of change. United, Nicaragua will once again be a Republic.”
Journalist and opposition leader Cristiana Chamorro seeks to run in the November presidential elections in Nicaragua. Photo: AFP
One of her brothers, the journalist Carlos Fernando Chamorro, explained that the candidate, against whom an arrest warrant was issued for the alleged money laundering case, she was left under “house arrest” after “more than five hours of police raids.”
Search and arrest
On Wednesday, the Nicaraguan Police searched the home of the opposition candidate for the presidency and keeps it occupied, said Carlos Fernando Chamorro, winner of the Ortega y Gasset 2021 prize and who directs a group of media critical of the Sandinista government.
Judge Karen Chavarría Morales, head of the Ninth Criminal Hearing District of Managua, issued on Wednesday a search and arrest warrant against Chamorro Barrios, who led the NGO Fundación Violeta Barrios de Chamorro until last February, when it closed.
The judge also ordered that the judicial process be processed by law, and “once it is apprehended and placed at the order of the judicial authority, the accused will be given the respective hearing.
Meanwhile, the Fifth District Criminal Court of Managua Circumscription Hearings resolved “to grant the precautionary measures requested by the Public Ministry” against Chamorro Barrios, accused of the crimes of abusive management, ideological falsehood, both in real bankruptcy with money, property and assets laundering.
They ask for disqualification
The Prosecutor’s Office, led by the former Sandinista guerrilla Ana Julia Guido, asked Chamorro Barrios, a 67-year-old journalist, to be disqualified from public office, who two days ago asked the opposition Citizens for Freedom Alliance (CxL) to be included as a presidential candidate for the general elections of November 7.
The Justice also issued immigration withholding and prohibited you from attending certain meetings or places related to the facts being investigated, so “you must refrain from attending any type of meetings or activities due to the seriousness of the crimes under investigation.”
According to the Ministry of the Interior, the Violeta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation, dedicated to the protection and promotion of freedom of the press and expression, “seriously breached its obligations before the Regulatory Entity, and the analysis of the Financial Statements, period 2015-2019 , clear evidence of money laundering was obtained, “for which” the Public Ministry has been informed to (open) the corresponding investigation. “
In this case, the Prosecutor’s Office called about twenty journalists to testify as witnesses, as well as the writer, novelist and former vice president of Nicaragua Sergio Ramírez Mercado in his capacity as legal representative of the NGO Fundación Luisa Mercado, who maintained a relationship with the Violeta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation.
Relatives and friends of Cristiana Chamorro are expelled by anti-riot agents, in front of the house of the opposition leader, this Thursday in Managua. Photo: EFE
Strong international condemnation of the arrest
Human rights organizations around the world immediately condemned Chamorro’s arrest.
The executive director for the Americas of Human Rights Watch (HRW), José Miguel Vivanco, asked the United States and the European Union to “condemn with one voice this plan to prevent the development of democratic elections.”
The Organization of American States (OAS) argued, in relation to Chamorro’s disqualification, that “actions like this deprive the government and the organizers of the electoral process of any political credibility.”
The arrest was also condemned by the office of the UN representative for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet; from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Canada and by the president of Panama, Juan Carlos Varela.
Meanwhile, the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights, Mary Lawlor, urged the Nicaraguan government on Thursday to “put an end to the increasing attacks and arbitrary arrests against human rights defenders” in the country. .
In a statement, the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights stressed that “a new wave of arrests and attacks by the State security forces was unleashed within the framework of the third anniversary of the demonstrations that began in April 2018 against the reforms of the social security system, the lack of response of the State to the fire in the Indio Maíz Natural Reserve and in response to the violent repression of protesters. “
“Nicaragua should not criminalize legitimate practices such as participation in peaceful protests, especially if defenders face prolonged detention,” Lawlor said.
Source: EFE and ANSA