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24 Oct 2022

E&E News

Nicaragua: Gold mining industry sanctioned by the US for alleged human rights violations and support to Russia


"Biden admin targets Nicaragua’s mining industry", 24 August 2022

...President Joe Biden issued an executive order giving government officials more authority to sanction Nicaragua’s businesses, including its gold mining industry, which the administration said is used to fund “authoritarian and destabilizing activities.”

The Treasury Department also sanctioned the nation’s General Directorate of Mines...

In addition, the Treasury sanctioned Reinaldo Gregorio Lenin Cerna Juarez, also known as Cerna, a former state security official accused of human rights violations, and the State Department restricted visas for more than 500 Nicaraguans and their family members.

Under the sanctions, Americans are banned from engaging in business activities with the Nicaraguan General Directorate of Mines or Cerna.

Officials explained the sanctions as part of Biden’s wider bid to cut off financial support to Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, who was the leader of the country in the 1980s and then was again elected president in 2006. He’s served in that role ever since and has been accused of brutal anti-democratic crackdowns.

The sanctions were also a response to Nicaragua’s support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine after the country voted against a recent U.N. resolution condemning Russian annexation attempts...