The Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) denounced this Friday that the Government of Daniel Ortega maintains a “virtual state of siege” in Nicaragua, which restricts the freedom of the independent press, attacks and steals equipment from journalists and prevents meetings in spaces public.
The details are contained in the report on the state of press freedom in Nicaragua between October 2019 and March 2020, presented to the IAPA, which is based in Miami.
The document emphasizes that, 19 months before the general elections, “secrecy has not improved and the hegemony of the government’s media and the presidential family continues to dominate.”
“The situation of press, political and economic freedom has not improved in this period,” he says.
Since the popular outbreak against President Ortega in April 2018, Nicaragua has lived through a socio-political crisis that has left hundreds of dead, prisoners or disappeared, thousands of wounded, and tens of thousands in exile.
The report presented today denounces that the National Police or “Ortega Police” does not allow any meeting in public spaces and attacks journalists who cover events, “stealing their cameras and cell phones.”
This repression, he stresses, motivated the US Treasury Department. to issue “severe penalties”.
The report highlights that there were few positive exceptions such as the release by the Government of 91 “political prisoners” on December 30 and 9 more on February 14. However, it indicates that 59 people are imprisoned for political reasons.
Likewise, he rescued the return of equipment to La Prensa, an embargo suspended after more than a year, thanks to the mediation of the apostolic nuncio Monsignor Waldemar Sommertag.
However, the headquarters and media equipment confiscated a year ago, such as Confidencial and 100% Noticias, have not been returned.
The ban on open and cable transmission remains. In addition, since the second week of March the YouTube signal of 100% Noticias has been closed by the Government, after Channel 4, owned by the family of President Ortega, filed 44 complaints for publications between 2013 and 2015.
According to the report, the Violeta B. de Chamorro foundation carried out a study on the Law on Access to Public Information in 65 state institutions and concluded that 57 have their website, but only 26 have a link to the Office of Access to Public Information. Information.
The IAPA also issued a resolution on Nicaragua demanding that the government cease its repression against journalists and protesters and respect human rights and the basic principles of democracy.