Nicaragua: they order the arrest of the writer Sergio Ramírez, winner of the Cervantes Prize and historical leader of Sandinismo

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The Nicaraguan Prosecutor’s Office accused and asked to arrest the writer this Wednesday Sergio Ramirez, Cervantes Prize in 2017 and historical leader of Sandinismo. The novelist is abroad and had already announced that he would not return to the country for fear of reprisals for his criticism of the government.

The former vice president of the current president Daniel Ortega was accused of acts that “incite hatred” and for “conspiring” against sovereignty, in the framework of a wave of open trials against opponents and two months before the general elections of November 7.

In a statement, the Prosecutor’s Office said that “an accusation was filed against Sergio Ramírez Mercado for carrying out acts that promote and incite hatred and violence.”

The Prosecutor’s Office accuses a renowned Nicaraguan writer of receiving funds from the Violeta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation, whose directors are accused of laundering goods and assets.

According to the note, the actions charged against the novelist “fall within the criminal category of conspiracy to undermine national integrity, in competition with the crime of laundering money, property and assets” established in the criminal code.

For the Prosecutor’s Office, the writer received money through the Luisa Mercado Foundation, an entity that promotes culture, with the aim of “destabilizing” the country.

Who is Sergio Ramírez

Ramírez, 78, was a member of the Governing Board of National Reconstruction that assumed power in the Central American country after the triumph of the 1979 revolution. He was also Ortega’s vice president in his first term (1985-1990).

However, in 1995, he resigned due to discrepancies from the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN-left).

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The charges against the author of “Divine Punishment” are the same as those attributed by the Prosecutor’s Office to 34 opponents and critics of the Government, detained between June and August, including seven candidates for the presidency, under laws approved by the Government last December.

Ramírez, winner in 2017 of the Cervantes Prize, the most important in Spanish literature, remains outside Nicaragua after at the beginning of June he was interviewed as a witness by the Prosecutor’s Office about his links with the Violeta Barrios de Chamorro Foundation, which The aspiring opposition to the presidency Cristiana Chamorro, detained, led.

At that time, the 1998 Alfaguara award for “Margarita, the sea is beautiful” explained that the financial support to the Luisa Mercado Foundation, named after his mother, was for activities of the Centroamérica Cuenta cultural platform, which annually brings together writers , storytellers and poets of the world.

The situation in Nicaragua

Almost two months before the elections, the justice system has already sent more than 20 detainees to trial, including five of the seven candidates for the presidency.

Daniel Ortega, 75, was in government between 1979 and 1990, first at the head of a Governing Board and then as president. In 1990 he was defeated by former President Violeta Barrios de Chamorro, but returned to power in 2007 and will now seek reelection for another six years.

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