U.S., Britain, Canada slap sanctions on Nicaraguan officials in coordinated action

US Materials 16 November 2021 04:26 (UTC +04:00)

The United States, Britain and Canada imposed sanctions on Nicaraguan officials on Monday in a concerted response to an election that many countries have denounced as rigged in favor of President Daniel Ortega, Trend reports citing Reuters.

The Biden administration slapped punitive measures on nine Nicaraguans, while the UK targeted eight, including Vice President Rosario Murillo, Ortega's wife, considered a power broker who rules alongside the former Marxist guerrilla leader.

Canada rolled out sanctions against 11 Nicaraguan officials.

The U.S. sanctions, which included the energy minister, vice minister of finance and an entire government ministry, followed Ortega's re-election to a fourth consecutive term on Nov. 7 after jailing political rivals and cracking down on critical media.

President Joe Biden had accused Ortega of organizing a "pantomime" election in the Central American nation, and U.S. officials have pledged to work with allies to ratchet up the pressure.

"The United States is sending an unequivocal message to President Ortega, Vice President Murillo and their inner circle that we stand with the Nicaraguan people in their calls for reform and a return to democracy," Andrea Gacki, director of the U.S. Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control, said in a statement.

The Nicaraguan government did not immediately respond to a request for comment.