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Universal Periodic Review of Nicaragua – Statement by the United States
February 8, 2010

UN Human Rights Council


Consideration of UPR Reports

Report of the UPR Working Group on Nicaragua


Statement by the Delegation of the United States of America

Delivered by John C. Mariz

Los Estados Unidos quesieran dar le la bienvenida a La Ministra del Interior de Nicaragua, Sra Morales Mazun, y a la delegación de Nicaragua en el Grupo de Trabajo del EPU. Hemos revisado cuidadosamente el informe nacional de Nicaragua y ofrece el siguiente comentario y tres recomendaciones.]

The United States notes with interest Nicaragua’s inclusion in its reporting on civil and political rights that the Office for Coordination of Access to Information guarantees that the government observes and complies with the law on access to information. Media and civil society groups, however, have expressed serious concerns that government officials have denied them access to information that should be publicly available, and also that the Office for Coordination of Access to Information is severely understaffed and lacks adequate equipment to reasonably serve the public. The United States recommends that Nicaragua ensure full compliance with the letter and spirit of its law on access to information, and that the Office for Coordination of Access to Information be sufficiently staffed and equipped to undertake its responsibilities to the public.

The United States also notes with interest that in its reporting on the status of protection of civil and political rights, Nicaragua has not included information regarding measures it is taking to ensure respect for freedom of expression, in particular for the media and journalists. The United States notes with concern numerous complaints expressed by media outlets and journalists regarding harassment, censorship, arbitrary application of libel laws, and the use of national security justifications to suppress reporting. The United States strongly recommends that the Government of Nicaragua ensure full respect of the country’s constitutional provisions for freedom of expression and refrain from using administrative, judicial, or financial means to limit the exercise of this human right.

The United States appreciates Nicaragua’s statement that it supports the broadest participation of civil society organizations and integrating the perspectives of women in the promotion and protection of civil rights. However, the United States notes that civil society leaders and organizations, including those advocating for women’s rights, have been the subjects of unsubstantiated accusations of money laundering and other financial improprieties, as well as death threats in relation to their political views, and other forms of harassment. The United States recommends that Nicaragua comply with the letter and spirit of the representations in its National Report and ensure that civil society groups are able to operate without harassment or other forms of intimidation.

Thank you.