In its drift towards authoritarianism, the regime obstructs the holding of free and fair elections
MEPs condemn restrictive laws designed to criminalize the opposition in Nicaragua and demand the immediate release of all political prisoners.
In a resolution approved on Thursday, the plenary firmly condemns all the repressive actions of the Nicaraguan authorities against democratic opposition parties and other opponents of the regime, and especially the deaths they have caused.
MEPs are calling for the immediate and unconditional release of all arbitrarily detained political prisoners, including pre-candidates for the presidency, and other activists, human rights defenders and journalists. They also demand proof that the imprisoned people are still alive, as well as their whereabouts.
The text denounces the “growing drift of the regime towards authoritarianism”, by narrowing the space for democracy, understanding at the national level and international mediation for a peaceful solution to the conflict, and hindering the holding of free and fair elections next November 7.
The restrictive and punitive laws to undermine the opposition passed in recent years “institutionalize the repression and legalize the acts committed in the country since their adoption,” adds the Chamber.
The aforementioned laws must be repealed immediately and dialogue and democracy restored, as the only way to find a peaceful solution to the political, economic and social crisis that the country is experiencing, according to the EP. The Nicaraguan authorities must also modify the electoral law in accordance with the parameters indicated by the Organization of American States (OAS) and allow the unrestricted presence of national and international electoral observation bodies.
MEPs appeal to the Nicaraguan government to lift the de facto state of siege, respect the role of the national police as a non-political, non-partisan force, and disarm the paramilitary forces.
Those responsible for the serious violations committed by the Government of Nicaragua since 2018 must be held accountable, the text adds. At this point, MEPs encourage the Council and the member states to expand the list of those sanctioned, to include, among others, President Daniel Ortega and Vice President Rosario Murillo, taking special care to prevent the Nicaraguan people from being harmed. The text was approved with 629 votes in favor, 19 against and 40 abstentions.