“Nicaragua’s Upcoming Vote Will Be ‘Fake’, EU’s Borrell Says.”

The European Union’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has stated that Nicaragua’s upcoming presidential elections are “fake” and organized by a dictatorship. Elections for the president, congress, and local authorities are scheduled to be held on November 7, 2021, in Nicaragua. Current President Daniel Ortega is poised to win and expand his control next month, as elections are called out for being unfair. The electoral college is already heavily in favour of Ortega, and all the individuals in his opposition have been jailed or exiled. This raises immense concern as citizens of the state do not have access to free or fair elections and are subject to oppression by the government.

Borrell additionally commented, “We will continue to insist on democracy, human rights and the rule of law.” Nicaragua is being held accountable and condemned for its government’s actions surrounding both the past and upcoming elections. In the October 8th news conference in Luxembourg, he continued to state that “(We insist on) the release of political prisoners…and the holding of free and fair elections. The one that will take place is a fake election, organized by a dictatorship.”

The EU’s recognition and focus on the events in Nicaragua are suggestive that change in the regime will be pushed for. At the moment, citizens are unable to express specific views towards the government and exercise their right to political freedom. This is most definitely intolerable that they are subject to violence for having outside views and opposing Ortega and his administration. It is also unfair and unjust that the regime jails and exiles those who run against him; this makes it impossible for any sort of democracy to be established while also violating basic human rights. Hence, it is paramount that this issue is addressed and made known to promote rights to freedom and peace in Nicaragua.

Daniel Ortega has been serving as the President of Nicaragua since 2007, and if re-elected in November will be serving his fifth term in the position. His administration has become increasingly anti-democratic. In June 2018, it was reported by Amnesty International that Ortega had embarked on a violent campaign against those protesting his regime. According to the Wilson Center, there have been high numbers of migrants fleeing to Costa Rica and neighboring countries during his presidency, and over 300 citizens have been killed by government forces during protests. In addition, Ortega’s government has implemented repressive laws that restrict civic space and the political rights of citizens in the country.

Members of the EU as well as other nations and organizations are likely to further condemn these actions and look for routes to implement change in the nation. As the elections draw closer, it is important to recognize the consequences if Ortega is reelected for his fifth term. It is likely the oppression of his citizens would continue or even worsen. In addition, anti-government protests would likely further ensue as well, putting a greater number of individuals at risk.