The People’s Health Movement in Latin America hereby expresses to the international community its profound concern over the events that have been occurring in our sister nation of Nicaragua since April 2018, which were triggered by highly unpopular reforms the government tried to make to the pension system. This was the fuse that lit the popular explosion against abuses of power by Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo, the ruling couple, which so far have left a toll of over 300 dead, thousands of wounded, hundreds of people arbitrarily detained without access to due process, and tens of thousands of exiles.
This situation has led many longstanding social organizations, including the Centro de Información y Servicios de Asesoría en Salud (CISAS), a health NGO, to demand a process of dialogue that would develop a minimum set of understandings to end the abuses and bloodshed of our comrades who suffer repression, abuse and death daily.
One of these historic voices comes from Ana Quirós Víquez, who was beaten while participating in a public demonstration on 18 April, resulting in wounds to her head and fractures of her right hand. She emerged from this undaunted to continue the struggle demanding dialogue and negotiation. As a consequence, on Tuesday, 27 November, following an arbitrary decision by the Ortega-Murillo government, she was expelled from Nicaragua, arguing that she “has two nationalities” (Costa Rican and Nicaraguan), and unjustifiably banned from entering Nicaragua for the next five years.
Given these events, the People’s Health Movement in Latin America CONDEMNS:
- The repression and impunity that has been inflicted by the Ortega-Murillo regime on our sister nation of Nicaragua since April 2018; and
- The criminalization of social protest, labelling it as an attempted coup or external aggression, thus denying the establishment of dialogue and negotiations to put an end to the bloodshed and human rights violations.
IN PARTICULAR, WE REPUDIATE:
The arbitrary, tyrannical expulsion of our comrade ANA QUIRÓS VÍQUEZ, in violation of her rights, specifically her political rights.
WE DEMAND THAT THE ORTEGA-MURILLOS:
Immediately reinstate the right of Ana Quirós Víquez to live freely as a Nicaraguan citizen in her country, which she has done so much to defend at different points in its history.
WE CALL ON DEMOCRATIC GOVERNMENTS TO:
Take a political position in defence of rights and true democracy, and break from the indifference that makes them accomplices of the regime.
WE ALSO CALL ON SOCIAL MOVEMENTS AND ORGANIZATIONS TO:
Speak out and join in demanding that ANA QUIRÓS VÍQUEZ must be given back the full exercise of her rights.
Latin America, November 2018.