Humanitarian organizations reject exhibition of opponents arrested in Nicaragua

Nicaragua’s humanitarian organizations repudiated this Wednesday (31) the exposure of opponents considered political prisoners of the government of dictator Daniel Ortega, after families denounced malnutrition and extreme thinness of the inmates.

“It was evident that the regime used filters to hide their pallor, but they were not able to deceive, they were not able to discredit their relatives, who communicated at a national and international level the subhuman conditions and torture to the to which their family members are subject,” said the Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights (Cenidh), after Nicaraguan authorities released photographs and videos of the inmates.

At least 20 opponents have been shown since Tuesday through images by the official press and with a Sandinista profile, since the joint complaint by the families, in which they claimed to suffer “more malnutrition and extreme weight loss” due to an alleged reduction in food portions .

In the images, opponents, including former Sandinista dissident guerrilla Dora María Téllez and three former presidential candidates, were seen wearing blue prisoner clothes, with physical appearances similar to those previously described by relatives, that is, underweight and thin.

The Nicaragua Human Rights Collective Never Again described the exhibition as an “advertising spectacle” and a “marketing spectacle”, with which the Ortega government seeks to “wash its face”.

Both Cenidh and Coletivo agreed that the “informative hearings” before Judge Octavio Ernesto Rothschuh, president of the Managua Court of Appeal, and other judges , where the images were allegedly taken, do not exist in the judicial process.

“It is an express confession of abuse of power and malfeasance that all these magistrates and judges are committing”, emphasized Cenidh.

“This presentation, from a legal point of view, makes no sense. The sole purpose of the presentation is to wash the face of the Ortega regime,” said Coletivo’s lawyer, Juan Carlos Arce.

The organizations demanded the release of more than 200 prisoners considered political prisoners, including Bishop Rolando Álvarez and ten Catholic priests, detained in the last three months.

Convicts exposed in the last two days remain incarcerated in the prison known as El Chipote, which was denounced as a alleged torture center for the Nicaraguan police by various humanitarian organizations.

The opponents, detained between May and November of 2021, were sentenced to between seven and

years in prison for crimes of “treason” or money laundering.

Dictator Daniel Ortega classified the imprisoned opponents as “traitors to the country”, “criminals” and “children of the mother of the Yankee imperialists”.

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