The US State Department reported on Tuesday that it is observing “very closely” the relations that Iran maintains with the countries of the Western Hemisphere, “including cooperation plans with Nicaragua.”
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian was in Managua last week and held meetings with the executive, headed by President Daniel Ortega, and his wife Rosario Murillo, after having signed a cooperation agreement between both countries.
Abdollahian also took advantage of his visit to the region to criticize sanctions imposed by the United States against his government, accused of violating human rights and said that “they were pressures and aggressions” from “anti-imperialism.”
In this regard, the State Department told the voice of america that sanctions against Iran “remain unchanged.”
“We continue to closely monitor Iran’s relations with countries in the Western Hemisphere, including cooperation plans with Nicaragua,” a State Department spokesperson said.
Nicaragua has a special relationship with Iran. In fact, Ortega has referred to the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979 as “a twin revolution” to that of the Sandinista popular uprising, which achieved its victory against the government of Anastasio Somoza that same year.
That closeness continued after Ortega left power after losing the 1990 elections and became evident as soon as the Sandinista leader returned to the presidency in 2007.
Ortega named Mohammed Lashtar, a Libyan nationalized Nicaraguan, a nephew of Gaddafi and linked to the Libyan intelligence services, as his “secretary and private adviser for international affairs.”
[Con la colaboración de Salomé García y Houston Castillo, corresponsales de la VOA en Washington y Nicaragua]