Justice,peace and an end to violence
News from Nicaragua | Friday, 11 May 2018 |
The US intensifies threats to destabilise Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua
On 7 May, in a swearing in ceremony for Carlos Trujillo, the new US ambassador to the Organisation of American States (OAS), US vice president Mike Pence ramped up interventionist rhetoric against Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. He stated that working for ‘freedom’ in the three countries is a priority for the Trump administration: “We will stay by the side of those who long for freedom and we will confront their oppressors.”
Given the complexity and sensitivity of the situation in Nicaragua, the escalation of US interference is extremely ominous.
Peace, justice, reconciliation and an end to violence
The situation in Nicaragua is calm but tense as mechanisms to negotiate peace, justice and reconciliation are put in place. This includes a National Dialogue without conditions involving all sectors which will be mediated by the Bishops’ Conference; a Truth, Justice and Peace Commission set up by the National Assembly; and an investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office to hold all those responsible for killings, violence and sabotage to account.
Members of the Truth Commission have initiated contact with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and other regional and international organisations to seek their advice and support in carrying out a ‘broad and transparent investigation.’
According to economist Nestor Avendaño, Nicaragua’s dramatic change of image abroad is already being felt. This could mean a fall in economic growth and foreign investment and a general deceleration of the economy.
Given the susceptibility of the tourist industry, there are already warnings of cancellations, particularly affecting tourist towns of Leon, Grenada, and San Juan del Sur.
Who will pay the price?
A reminder of who will be most affected by the violence and instability is summed up by the Jubilee House Community – Center for Development in Central America http://jhc-cdca.blogspot.co.uk/2018/04/unrest-in-nicaragua.html
“…..as usual, the poor will disproportionately bear the brunt of economic repercussions of recent events as prices rise and the economic growth the country has been experiencing up until now begins to shrink. The stability in recent years has been very good for the folks we work with – more kids in school and university, farmers investing in their farms and their families. But now that stability is being questioned, which hits particularly hard people already living on the edge.”