The detention of more than 13 Nicaraguans on 14-15 November in connection with their support to hunger strikers gathered at the Church of San Miguel in the city of Masaya, as well as the siege of the church by police forces, represent an infringement against the fundamental rights of Nicaraguan citizens. This is a serious setback to the political process that conveys a negative signal about the willingness of the government to work towards a peaceful and democratic way out of the crisis.
The European Union calls on the government of Nicaragua and law enforcement bodies to release the detainees and drop the charges, lift the siege of the church and ensure the full respect of the constitutional rights of all Nicaraguans, including freedom of expression, assembly, religion and peaceful protest, as it had committed to under the March agreements concluded with the Civic Alliance.
Only the full implementation of the March agreements, a credible and inclusive dialogue as well as political and electoral reforms according to international standards can resolve the on-going crisis in the country and lead to a peaceful and democratic way out. The EU calls on all parties to resume their efforts and to take genuine and constructive measures to that end, as stated in the latest Council Conclusions of October 14.
The EU reaffirms its determination to continue to use all its instruments to support justice and democracy in Nicaragua and to react to the ongoing deterioration of human rights and the rule of law. Those who undermine democracy and the rule of law in Nicaragua shall be held accountable.