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Nicaraguan justice calls for the arrest of writer Sergio Ramirez

In Nicaragua, the repression hardens against the opposition. The country’s justice system has demanded the arrest of the writer Sergio Ramirez, Cervantes Prize 2017, the most important distinction in the Spanish literary world, for “conspiracy”. The same fate was reserved for many opponents of President Daniel Ortega, according to judicial sources, Thursday, September 9.

The writer, former collaborator of President Ortega, is accused of “incitement to hatred” and “conspiracy”, charges often used against opponents or candidates in the presidential election, scheduled for November. He was also accused of receiving funds from the Violeta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation, accused of undermining the country’s sovereignty and money laundering.

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The indictment was served on Tuesday on the writer, in rupture since 1995 with the Sandinista National Liberation Front of President Ortega. Mr. Ramirez left Nicaragua in June after being heard as a witness in the investigation into the Violetta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation. He is also accused of having received money from the Luisa Mercado Foundation, an entity promoting culture, for the purpose of “Destabilize” the country, according to the Nicaraguan prosecutor’s office.

Sergio Ramirez, 78, was a member of the government after the Sandinistas seized power in 1979. He served as vice-president during Mr. Ortega’s first term (1985-1990). Author of the novel Castigo divino (“Divine punishment”), Mr. Ramirez was also awarded the Alfaguara Prize in 1998 for “Margarita, esta linda la mar” (“Margarita, the sea is beautiful”).

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Twenty opponents arrested two months before the presidential election

The Nicaraguan government has already accused some 34 opponents of sovereignty or conspiracy against the state, including 7 presidential candidates, under laws approved by parliament in December.

Two months before the November elections, Nicaraguan justice has already referred to a court more than 20 arrested opponents, including 5 presidential candidates, including candidate Cristiana Chamorro, president of the Chamorro Foundation, who bears the name of her mother, Violetta Barrios de Chamorro. The latter was elected president in 1990 before Daniel Ortega, 75, returned to power in 2007.

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