Interactive Dialogue on High Commissioner’s Report on Nicaragua
Statement by the United States of AmericaAs Delivered by Mr. Brian Kelly
Human Rights Council, 51st Session
Thank you, Mr. President, and thank you to the Office of the High Commissioner for this report.
The United States deplores the human rights crisis under the Ortega-Murillo authorities, which has worsened since the High Commissioner’s June update.
Some 190 political opponents, journalists, and human rights defenders are serving unjust prison terms and subjected to psychological violence, isolation, and denial of medical care or adequate food. We call for the immediate and unconditional release of all who have been arbitrarily detained.
The authorities must cease their assault on civic space, including the closure of over 1,500 nongovernmental organizations and dozens of independent media outlets, and cease the escalation of violence and oppression, including the detention of a senior bishop aimed at silencing the Catholic church and its followers.
The ousting and replacement, without elections, of five opposition mayors with government loyalists show the authorities have no intention of carrying out free and fair local elections in November. We strongly urge Nicaragua to re-engage with OHCHR and the OAS and take concrete measures to re-establish democracy, rule of law, and respect for human rights.
Question: Mr. Director, what can member states do to support the Group of Human Rights Experts, given the authorities’ continued lack of engagement with OHCHR?