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Nicaragua

Monthly Updates

November 2022

On 6 November, Nicaragua held local elections to choose leadership in the country’s departments and municipalities. Members of Nicaragua’s opposition, including those living in exile, as well as civil society have characterized this process as fraudulent, given the lack of competitiveness and voter intimidation. Electoral observation civil society group Urnas Abiertas reported that abstention surpassed 80 per cent. Results from the electoral authority indicated that the incumbent party, led by Daniel Ortega, will control the totality of the country’s municipalities. This result points to a consolidation of the single-party model, with no remaining opposition-held local governments.

September 2022

Continued attacks against the freedom of the press have been ongoing for years in Nicaragua, yet in another negative development, CNN’s signal was cancelled in the country. Vice-President Rosario Murillo explained this determination by stating that CNN’s content was in violation of the Constitution of Nicaragua and vulnerated national sovereignty. In addition, a journalist and three employees of La Prensa newspaper – whose staff mainly work in exile, given that its offices were shut down by the government - have been accused of conspiracy.  Members of the Catholic church have condemned governmental actions that target the free exercise of religion. Members of religious orders continue to be denied re-entry to the country – including for Nicaraguan nationals - and the celebration of a religious festival that had been due to take place on 20 September has also been prohibited.

August 2022

In the context of a wider crackdown on opposition, Bishop Rolando Álvarez was detained on 19 August and placed under house arrest, and seven other members of clergy were arrested and sent to El Chipote prison, known as a jail for political prisoners. President Daniel Ortega has targeted Catholic clergy since 2018 when, in the context of the mass protests of the same year, Church members offered to mediate and showed support towards the aspirations of the social movement. This comes after numerous restrictions on the work of the Catholic Church in Nicaragua, including the closure of religious orders, the expulsion of members from the country and the confiscation of assets. Bishop Álvarez had been vocal in denouncing the Ortega regime’s actions against the Catholic Church, including the closure of radio stations from its Diocese. The move was condemned by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, which also called upon the government to end its wider crackdown on the Catholic clergy and respect religious freedom. Bishop Álvarez has been accused of attempting to destabilize government, and it is believed that the goal of President Ortega is to force him into exile.

Explore past monthly updates

GSoD Indices Data 2012-2021

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Basic Information

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Population Tooltip
6 702 380
System of government
Presidential system
Head of government
President Daniel Ortega (since 2007)
Head of government party
Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN)
Electoral system for lower or single chamber
List Proportional Representation
Women in lower or single chamber Tooltip
51.7%
Women in upper chamber Tooltip
Not applicable
Last legislative election
2021
Effective number of political parties Tooltip
2.15
Head of state
President Daniel Ortega
Selection process for head of state
Direct election (plurality)
Latest Universal Periodic Review (UPR) date
15/05/2019
Latest Universal Periodic Review (UPR) percentage of recommendations supported
52.12%
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Human Rights Treaties

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State Party State party
Signatory Signatory
No Action No action
United Nations Human Right Treaties
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
State Party
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
State Party
International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
State Party
Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women
State Party
Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment
State Party
Convention on the Rights of the Child
State Party
International Convention on Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families
State Party
International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance 
No Action
International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
State Party
International Labour Organisation Treaties
Forced Labour Convention
State Party
Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention
State Party
Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention
State Party
Equal Remuneration Convention
State Party
Abolition of Forced Labour Convention
State Party
Discrimination (Employment and Occupation) Convention
State Party
Convention concerning Minimum Age for Admission to Employment
State Party
Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention
State Party
Regional Treaties
American Convention on Human Rights
State Party
Additional Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
State Party
in
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Attributes Over Time

Representative government neutral Representative Government
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Fundamental rights
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Checks on government
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Impartial administration
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Participatory engagement
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022

GSoD Indices

Regime type
0 10