Video On Demand

Political Prisoners and the Future of Nicaragua

May 11, 2023 • 2:00 – 3:30 pm EDT

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Since the 2018 mass protests and ensuring violent state repression, the authoritarian Ortega-Murillo regime in Nicaragua has continued to crack down harshly on anyone connected to the democratic opposition in the country.  Hundreds of activists, students, opposition leaders, journalists and religious leaders have been arbitrarily imprisoned, violating their human and political rights, and subjecting some to torture. On February 9, 2023, 222 political prisoners were freed by the regime by exiling them to the United States and subsequently stripping many of their nationality. The regime has also initiated steps to confiscate the property and assets. Dozens more remain incarcerated, including Bishop Rolando Alvarez.

The discussion will be split into two parts. The first will highlight key findings from the upcoming report from international human rights lawyer Jared Genser and Perseus Strategies on political prisoners in the country, and what steps can be taken to ensure justice for the victims. The second will feature a conversation on the political trajectory of Nicaragua, and what the United States, region, and international community can do to promote a peaceful return to democracy.

This event is made possible through general support to CSIS.

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Photo: STR/AFP/Getty Images

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Contact Information

Jared Genser

Managing Director, Perseus Strategies

Juan Felipe Wills

Václav Havel Human Rights Fellow, Perseus Strategies

Juan Sebastián Chamorro

Former Nicaraguan Presidential Candidate

Rosalía Miller

President, Nicaragua Freedom Coalition, Co-founder of the Latino Student Fund

Félix Maradiaga

President and Founder, Fundación para la Libertad de Nicaragua, Former Nicaraguan Presidential Candidate