February 21st, 2020. The International Institute on Race, Equality and Human Rights (Race and Equality) recently launched the #ONUporNicaragua campaign to ask the UN Human Rights Council to renew resolution A/HRC/40/L.8, “Promotion and protection of human rights in Nicaragua,” originally adopted on March 21st, 2019 for a one-year period. This resolution expressed concern about the allegations of serious human rights violations committed in Nicaragua since April 2018 and increasing restrictions on civic space and expressions of dissent. The Resolution urged the Nicaraguan government to respect the human rights of its citizens, to return to the National Dialogue with protestors and other elements of civil society, and to resume cooperation with international organizations, including the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), and the Organization of American States (OAS).
The core of the resolution is the mandate given to High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet to prepare periodic reports on the situation in Nicaragua and present them to the Human Rights Council. Thus, in July 2019, Deputy High Commissioner Kate Gilmore presented an oral report, and in September 2019, High Commissioner Bachelet released a detailed written report on the progress of the situation of Nicaragua, including recommendations to the State of Nicaragua. The next oral update will take place on February 27th, during the 43rd session of the Human Rights Council.
Race and Equality considers the renewal of this mandate to be of the utmost importance, as it will allow the human rights violations which continue to occur in Nicaragua to be exposed and discussed at the UN Human Rights Council. As a result, the Council can continue to propose solutions and echo the demands of the Nicaraguan people: truth, justice and reparation for the victims of repression.
These images show the importance of the renewal of the OHCHR mandate in the words of Nicaraguans: