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Biden bans Nicaragua officials from entering United States

11-17-2021, 01:13 PM
Biden bans Nicaragua officials from entering United States

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President Joe Biden on Tuesday (Nov 16) banned members of the Nicaraguan government from entering the United States as he issued a broad proclamation in response to an election that Washington has denounced as rigged in favour of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

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Biden's travel ban applied to all of Nicaragua's "elected officials", apparently including Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, in addition to security force members, judges, mayors and others seen as undermining democracy in the Central American nation.

"The repressive and abusive acts of the Ortega government and those who support it compel the United States to act," Biden said in the decree.

Biden's order came just a day after the United States, Britain and Canada imposed targeted sanctions on lists of Nicaraguan officials in a concerted response to the Nov 7 election that many countries have called a sham.

They took action after Ortega's re-election to a fourth consecutive term after jailing political rivals and cracking down on critical media.

Ortega, a former Marxist guerrilla leader, has derided his US critics as "Yankee imperialists" and accused them of trying to undermine Nicaragua's electoral process. Cuba, Venezuela and Russia have offered Ortega their backing.

Previous sanctions, asset freezes and travel bans on certain Nicaraguan officials imposed by Biden and his predecessor, Donald Trump, have failed to deter Ortega, and many analysts are sceptical whether new measures will have much impact.

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