By Stephen Sefton – Mar 6, 2023
Last week saw the advance release of a summary of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s still-pending detailed report on Nicaragua. The report supposedly results from an investigation by a group of experts of “all alleged human rights violations and abuses committed in Nicaragua since April 2018.” This procedure and the document so far presented confirm in the most categorical way possible that the United Nations human rights system is complicit in the terrorism of the countries of the West against nations and peoples who resist their will, in this case Nicaragua.
The increasingly blatant development of this reality has been clear since the war against Serbia in 1999 to the wars against the legitimate governments of Libya, Ivory Coast and Syria in 2011. Also in this same period there has been an intensification of the genocidal blockade against Cuba and numerous genocidal attacks by Israel against the Palestinian people. These wars and blockades have been accompanied by the extension of sanctions against North Korea and intense illegal coercive measures against Iran and other countries. In Latin America, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has managed to overcome a ruthless offensive of infrastructure sabotage, outright theft of its national patrimony and sadistic trade and financial warfare waged by the United States and its allied countries.
In all these aggressions and campaigns of terrorism, the Western human rights industry has been complicit in one way or another. The height of their complicity in the terrorism of the Western ruling classes against the majority world has been their blatant collaboration in the offensive of the NATO countries, using the fascist government of Ukraine, against Russia and the Russian-speaking population of Donbass. This reality now includes the infamous instrumentalization of human rights as a tool to slander and attack the government of Nicaragua and to cover up the terrorism organized in 2018 by the governments of the United States and its allies in the European Union against the Nicaraguan people.
The United Nations system itself, in this case its Office on Drugs and Organized Crime, defines terrorism as:
• the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.
• the conduct of premeditated violent acts or the threat of violence perpetrated by members of an organized group, designed to create fear in an adversary or specific segment of society
• the deliberate creation and exploitation of fear through violence or the threat of violence in the pursuit of political change
• the threatened or actual use of illegal force and violence to attain a political, economic, religious, or social goal through fear, coercion or intimidation.
• illegitimate use of force to achieve a political objective by targeting innocent people
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All these criteria fully apply to the failed coup attempt of 2018. It is notorious in Nicaragua that Paolo Abrao of the IACHR affirmed to our authorities in 2018 that its mandate did not cover criminal acts. However, when the Nicaraguan State did apply its national laws against Western supported terrorist criminals, the IACHR, the UN and their NGO cronies demanded freedom for those convicted, claiming they were “political prisoners”. The same irrational and contorted logic is applied in this latest UN report, in clear violation of its obligation to respect Nicaragua’s national sovereignty.
In fact, the terrorist criminals were prosecuted according to numerous laws of the Republic of Nicaragua, Law 147, General Law on Non Profit Legal Entities ; Law 919, Law on Sovereign Security ; Law 977, Law against the Laundering of Assets, Funding of Terrorism, and Funding of the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction; Law 996, Amnesty Law; Law 1040, Law Regulating Foreign Agents; and Law 1055, Law in Defence of the People’s Right to Independence, Sovereignty and Self-Determination for Peace.
Furthermore as well as these crimes, other offenses of which the people concerned were convicted involved crimes set out in Nicaragua’s Criminal Code, such as financial crimes and fraud including: misappropriation and improper retention (Codigo Penal article 238), laundering of money, goods and assets (Codigo Penal article 282), abusive management (Codigo Penal article 278) and ideological falsehood (Codigo Penal article 285) or else treasonous criminal conduct (Codigo Penal Articles 410 and 412).
However, as well as violating one way or another this body of national laws, the 2018 coup promoters also violated numerous norms of international law, for eample, the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, and International Convention against the Taking of Hostages. But the report of the Human Rights Council’s group of experts on Nicaragua completely ignores this body of international law which is directly relevant to the actions of the failed coup instigators from April 2018 onwards, criminally financed by the United States and its European allied governments.
So the Human Rights Council report not only violates Nicaragua’s national sovereignty. It also tramples on international law promoted by the United Nations system itself and ignores the criteria of that same system regarding terrorism. It even ignores its own terms of reference to investigate “all alleged human rights violations and abuses committed in Nicaragua since April 2018.” It failed to take into account repeated past submissions on the part of the Government of Reconciliation and National Unity of Nicaragua since April 2018 to the OAS and UN human rights system. But they complain in their report with astonishing chutzpah that the Nicaraguan government did not respond to their requests for information.
The report also fails to take into account the countless reports in Nicaragua’s local media at the time of the violent events provoked by the coup promoting opposition in Nicaragua from April 18, 2018 onwards. Aside from the massive amount of material available in Spanish that disproves its false conclusions, the UN panel of experts has also ignored a substantial body of material both documental and audiovisual in English that demonstrates the complete lack of impartiality of the expert group’s report. None of this is new.
As many people have commented, the UN has long served as an obedient tool for the political objectives of the United States and its allies. And it is not just that Western governments with impunity fail to comply with international norms promoted by the UN, in fact they act deliberately to violate them. As the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation has commented in relation to Ukraine, “Not once in the last eight years since the reunification of Crimea with Russia have the West or the UN human rights mechanisms condemned the illegal and inhumane actions of the Ukrainian authorities, who have imposed a water, energy, transport, food and humanitarian blockade on the peninsula.”
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And Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, adds “International and European human rights organizations pay no attention to this, and turn a blind eye to any violation of human rights when it comes to ethnic Russians. This is how the Russophobia we have been talking about for some time now manifests itself.”
Since the defeat of the violent phase of their coup attempt in Nicaragua on July 2018, the U.S. ruling classes and their allied countries in the European Union have continued seeking to advance their regime change agenda in Nicaragua. This latest spurious UN report signals a new phase in imperialist harassment against Nicaragua and its people. As might be expected, Nicaragua has made a dignified response in defense of its national sovereignty by declaring to the UN Human Rights Council on March 3rd this year:
“We demand that this organization reassume the principles for which it was created, which is to encourage real, equal and effective protection of Human Rights for all, without distinction or discrimination, within the framework of respect for our identity, our dignity, our idiosyncrasy and moreover, our sovereignty. It is necessary that this forum empowers itself with its responsibilities, recognizing and respecting the right of the peoples of the world to make their own decisions and to live in Peace, with Sovereignty and Humane Consideration.”
Stephen Sefton is a member of the Tortilla con Sal collective based in Nicaragua
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