The Department of State has taken steps to impose visa restrictions on 19 Nicaraguan election officials and political party officials who have enabled the Ortega-Murillo government’s attack on democracy. For the past three months, President Daniel Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, have intimidated anyone opposed to their efforts to entrench their power in Nicaragua, including through the arrest of dozens of political candidates, journalists, student and business leaders, NGO workers, and human rights advocates, and through the disqualification of any candidate seeking to run against them in the November 7 elections. This anti-democratic campaign included the August 6 disqualification by the Supreme Electoral Council of the last remaining genuine opposition party, based upon a request made by the Constitutionalist Liberal Party (PLC). As the Secretary said August 7, due to the government’s undemocratic and authoritarian actions, Nicaragua’s electoral process and its eventual results have lost all credibility.
Today’s action follows the Secretary’s announcements on July 12 and August 5 that imposed visa restrictions on 150 Nicaraguan judges, prosecutors, and family members of those officials under a visa restriction policy that applies to Nicaraguans and their immediate family members believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining democracy, including those with responsibility for, or complicity in, human rights abuses such as suppression of peaceful protests. With today’s action, we underscore our commitment to promoting accountability for all those complicit in the Ortega-Murillo government’s assault on democracy. They are not welcome in the United States.