The Foreign Ministers of the European Union (EU) will discuss on Monday, October 18, in a meeting in Luxembourg, what should be the most “appropriate” response of the 27 to the Nicaraguan elections on November 7, a source said this Friday, noting “there will probably be a refusal to acknowledge the result.”
The elections in Nicaragua will be held in a context in which the main opponents of President Daniel Ortega are imprisoned, under accusations of “treason.”
“The idea is to have a preliminary discussion among the ministers about how the EU should react after the elections. What should we do given the clear authoritarian turn of the regime that we see in Nicaragua,” said the source.
“We have a clear idea of what is going to happen. Basically, the opposition will not be allowed to participate in the elections and it is clear that everything is being prepared for a vote that will be neither free nor democratic.”
Given this situation, after the elections “there will probably be a refusal to recognize the result because it will not represent the will of Nicaraguans,” said the same source.
What they will be discussing in the meeting
However, the source avoided specifying whether the ministers will consider going further and approving new sanctions against the Ortega-Murillo regime. “I can’t say anything because it will depend on the discussion. After the elections, it will be time to focus more on it.”.
Another diplomatic source acknowledged that the EU is preparing to react “with a series of measures” to the “failure” of the elections, which will be held amid the “repression against the opposition and the media.”
In any case, they trusted in trying to “avoid negative effects on the Central American region”, which the EU considers “very important”.
The 14 sanctioned
The EU extended last Monday for another year the sanctions it approved in 2019 against Ortega regime officials who the European countries consider responsible for violations or abuses of human rights or for the repression of civil society and the opposition.
Since this legal framework was created, the EU has sanctioned a total of 14 regime personalities, including the vice president and first lady, Rosario Murillo; one of the sons of the presidential couple, Juan Carlos Ortega Murillo; the president of the National Assembly, Gustavo Porras Cortés; the president of the Supreme Court, Alba Luz Ramos Vanegas; the presidential advisor for economic affairs, Bayardo Arce Castaño, and the attorney general, Ana Julia Guido Ochoa.
They are joined by the police chiefs: the director of the National Police, Francisco Díaz, as well as the Luis Alberto Perez Olivas, Justo Pastor Urbina, Ramon Avellan, Fidel Dominguez Alvarez and Juan Antonio Valle Valle. The list of those punished is completed by the close collaborator of the presidential couple, Nestor Moncada Lau, and the former Minister of Health, Sonia Castro.
The Twenty-seven member EU justified the extension of the sanctions by claiming that the Nicaraguan Government has “accelerated the repression, banning opposition parties and civil society organizations and imprisoning political opponents, academics, journalists and other citizens without due judicial process.”
None of the sanctioned people can enter EU territory and any assets they have in the EU have also been frozen.