October 23, 2009

Kerry Condemns Nicaraguan Power Grab

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Senator John Kerry (D-MA), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, made the following statement today in response to a Nicaraguan Supreme Court ruling to allow President Daniel Ortega to seek another term:

"Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega's manipulation of the Nicaraguan Supreme Court this week to circumvent constitutional limits on his term in office reeks of the authoritarianism of the past. Coming on the heels of universally condemned municipal elections last year, his power grab deepens a crisis that Nicaragua can ill afford.

"Nicaragua and Honduras are obviously different, but unconstitutional actions are unacceptable anywhere. President Ortega appears to be following the cues of the coup-plotters in Honduras, where the president of the Congress and the military have manipulated the Supreme Court to rationalize a coup d'etat, resist the restoration of democracy, and impose martial law repression.

"Central America is too important for a return toauthoritarianism. Democratic order must be restored in both countries."

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