Located in Central America, just below Mexico, Nicaragua may be somewhat unfamiliar to us here in Korea. But Koreans will be able to relate to the political chaos that has recently been affecting Nicaragua. Since April 18th, there have been demonstrations in Nicaragua demanding the resignation of the country’s president, Daniel Ortega. Although the protestors’ voices have grown louder and louder, Ortega has routinely suppressed them by force. Why did people turn their backs on Ortega, who was once the leader of Nicaraguan democracy? To understand this question, we need to delve into the recent history of Nicaragua.
Ortega was born into a revolutionist’s family. Often exposed to the evil deeds of Somoza family who had dictated Nicaragua for nearly 50 years, Ortega joined the Sandinista National Liberation Front, the Nicaraguan Socialist Party, and began fighting against Somoza regime. After a fierce battle, Ortega’s Sandinista Front succeeded in driving out the last president of the Somoza regime, Anastasio Tachito Somoza Debayle. In recognition of his role in ousting the Somoza family, Ortega became the head of Nicaragua’s interim coalition government that was formed to replace the Somoza regime.
Although a Nicaraguan coalition was launched, the ongoing tension between the native tribes of Nicaragua took some time for Nicaragua to calm down. Ortega led the peace negotiations between the warring tribes and eventually the civil war came to an end. Ortega also put great effort in reconstructing Nicaragua, carrying out policies such as realigning medical insurance systems and the economy. Although he lost public approval at one time due to his repressive treatment of the press, Ortega was re-elected during the next presidential election and he stills serves as the country’s president in 2018. Ortega’s thirst for power, however, never stops. He has laid the groundwork for long-term control of power, by pointing to his wife as his successor. While many people have protested his moves, Ortega has just tried to stop them by using force.
According to human rights activists, more than 350 people have been killed in the past three months by the government of Daniel Ortega. Despite the concerns of international community, Ortega is not listening anyone’s voice. Once a hero in a democratic history of Nicaragua, Ortega now seems to have only one option left to him, and that is a disgraceful resignation. Like the Somoza family, who Ortega himself drove from power, Ortega’s time is up.< 저작권자 © 중앙헤럴드 무단전재 및 재배포금지 >