Dictatorship blocks participation in Spain of Gioconda Belli, poet in exile

The regime of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo vetoed, through the Nicaraguan embassy in Spain, the participation of the poet Gioconda Belli, currently in exile, in the second edition of the “Celebremos Iberoamérica” ​​festival to be held in Spain, arguing that “does not represent the Nicaraguan people,” Belli denounced through his Twitter account.

“Neither Cuba nor Venezuela have done something like this, they told me,” Belli said in a tweet, referring to a comment made to him. “For me it is a decoration that they know that if they want to silence my voice and my art, they have to exhibit their jealous tantrums.” “I went as a Nicaraguan writer and not as an official “representative” of anyone,” added to CONFIDENTIAL.

The writer explained that the event to which she was invited is coordinated by the Organization of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture (OEI) in collaboration with the member states, which have a voice and a vote to decide who participates.

For Belli, the action of the Ortega government, by blocking his participation in a cultural activity at the international level, “is unprecedented.”

“The regime is abusing the scope of its power and using diplomatic pressure to impose its political criteria over the quality criteria of the OIE. The ORMUs – Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo – react indignantly to diplomatic pressure, but they are not hesitant to apply it in the few spaces they have left,” said the renowned Nicaraguan writer, critical of the Ortega regime.

The OIE invited Belli to be part of the discussion “The writing that travels”, as part of the Festival program, which is governed by three cultural and artistic axes: literature, cinema and gastronomic heritage. This will take place between September 19 and 25 in Madrid, Spain. The initiative seeks to make visible and disseminate Ibero-American cultures with the support of embassies and institutions in the cultural field, is detailed in the letter that the OIE sent to Belli on July 20.

The writer clarified that she understands “the diplomatic position of the OIE and I do not complain to them” and recalled that the instance is dedicated to culture. “I wouldn’t have to go through this,” he pointed out.

Belli has taken advantage of international spaces in which she participates, as a writer, to denounce the human rights violations committed by the regime and demand the release of political prisoners, she has also questioned the dictatorial drift of the ruling couple.

Closure of International PEN

In February 2021, Belli announced in Nicaragua the closure of PEN, an organization that brought together writers, promoted reading in the country and the dissemination of culture.

“The decision to suspend the activities of the PEN Nicaragua Center in the immediate future is a consequence of the repressive wave of the Government of Daniel Ortega against critical journalists and writers, which began in 2018, exacerbated by the entry into force of the Law of Regulation of Foreign Agents, approved on October 15, 2020,” they said in a statement.

This year, the legal status of the organization was one of those canceled among the thousand Non-Profit Organizations (NPOs) that the Ortega regime has annulled, through Parliament, dominated by the Sandinista Front.

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