Democratic Senator Robert Menendez, Democrat of New Jersey, during a hearing in July 2020. POOL (Reuters)
Two US legislators have raised the pressure against the Daniel Ortega regime in Nicaragua.
Democratic Senator Robert Menéndez and his Republican colleague Michael McCaul have sent a letter this Friday to the presidents of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Costa Rica asking them to stop financing the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) to the Nicaraguan government, to which they have called a “criminal regime”.
Both members of the US Congress demand that the Central American leaders increase scrutiny and transparency over the funds that the bank delivers to Managua in the form of loans and financing.
"We urge your country to take advantage of your leadership as a founding member of CABEI to ensure that the bank's loans do not perpetuate the consolidation of the Nicaraguan dictatorship," reads the letter signed by Menéndez and McCaul.
The two legislators recall in the letter that the Ortega regime has been accused by the United Nations of committing crimes against humanity in the brutal repression unleashed first against the demonstrations that broke out in 2018 and then against critical voices, opposition leaders, journalists, intellectuals and activists.
The Ortega government has also withdrawn
Texas Republican Congressman Michael McCaul during a Foreign Affairs committee meeting on March 8 at the Capitol. Andrew Harnik (AP)
Menéndez and McCaul also recall in their letter that CABEI has become the main financing body for the Managua regime, which has received financing from the bank for more than three billion dollars.
"Such funding provides a lifeline to the Ortega-Murillo regime at a time of growing global condemnation of human rights violations in Nicaragua," the lawmakers state.
Menéndez and McCaul's request comes a day after a debate organized by the Inter-American Dialogue, a research center that analyzes international relations in the Western Hemisphere, was held in Washington, in which Dante Mossi, president of the CABEI, together.
political scientists Manuel Orozco, director of Migration, Remittances and Development Programs of the Inter-American Dialogue, and Ryan Berg, director of the Americas program of the Center for International Strategic Studies.
In the meeting, Mossi affirmed that in the institution that he directs "we put politics aside" when it comes to releasing money to the Ortega regime.
"His policies don't matter," said Mossi, what is important, he said, is that the money reaches the citizens.
The statements by the president of the multilateral bank generated a wave of criticism at a time when the Ortega regime is accused of gross violations of human rights.
In their letter to the Central American leaders, Menéndez and McCaul warn that "in the event that Ortega and Murillo do not allow a political opening, it will be imperative that their government use their voice and vote to suspend financing for their criminal regime."