The Nicaraguan government must stop placing business before the future of the country and its people, Amnesty International said in a new report today looking at a secretive deal that will lead to the construction of a canal and other side projects that will affect the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people and might leave many homeless.
Danger: Rights for sale. The Interoceanic Grand Canal project in Nicaragua and the erosion of human rights reveals how the obscure legal framework that led to the concession of the project, without genuine consultation with all affected communities, violates a catalogue of national and international standards on human rights and might lead to the forced eviction of hundreds of families. It also accuses authorities of harassing and persecuting anyone who dares to voice an opinion against the deal.
“Authorities in Nicaragua have secretly sold the country’s future to the highest bidder and put thousands of people at risk of losing everything,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.
Women may have to face their abusers in mediation after a legal reform passed by Nicaragua’s National Assembly last night, a move Amnesty International said is letting down thousands of survivors of domestic violence across the country.
“Instead of focusing on mediation and ways of letting abusers off the hook, the Nicaraguan authorities should look at ways of protecting women from violence and ensuring that those who abuse them face justice,” said Esther Major, Nicaragua researcher at Amnesty International who recently returned from the country
The Law 779 (Ley Integral contra la Violencia hacia la Mujer, Integral Law against Violence against Women), passed in 2012, provides a route for women to access justice and protection from violence and to hold perpetrators to account.
Amnesty International is currently analysing the reforms to the law in full.
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The Nicaraguan authorities should support a landmark law that defines crimes of violence against women and guarantee its full implementation, Amnesty International said today.
Law 779 (Ley Integral contra la Violencia hacia la Mujer, Integral Law against Violence against Women) provides a route for women to access justice and protection from violence and to hold perpetrators to account.
However, since it was passed last year the law has been consistently threatened by opponents who assert it is anti-family and anti-men, and that it is responsible for breaking up families.
“The violence perpetrated against women and children is what breaks up families, not legislation designed to help victims escape from violence and hold abusers to account,” said Esther Major, Amnesty International’s Researcher on Nicaragua.
“If the Nicaraguan authorities are serious about preventing violence from breaking up families, then Law 779 should be fully supported, resourced and implemented. Attempts to undermine the implementation of this law must be stopped.”