Letter from Humberto Ortega to the National Dialogue

This is a letter that retired General Humberto Ortega, founder of the Sandinista Army and brother of Pres. Daniel Ortega, wrote on July 4 to the National Dialogue.

Humberto Ortega calls on his brother to break up the paramilitary groups and call for early elections

Letter to the National Dialogue

On June 16th, thirty days that the Church gave as the term to finish the dialogue, the Bishops wisely have extended the prudential time so that the parties might sign fair and viable agreements, indispensible for overcoming the serious crisis of governance that threatens to generalize the bloody chaos, collapse the economy, causing suffering particularly for the poorest and youth of our society.

In March 1988 when we sat down full of hate to negotiate in Sapoá at the end of the war with dozens of thousands of dead, it was fundamental to meet one another and see one another as human beings. We learned that the art of negotiating is the art of knowing to cede and putting Nicaragua above all else. We signed the peace agreement, a process in the negotiation with the political opposition in 1989 that required articulating a symmetry that demanded the President Daniel Ortega to move up the presidential elections, and the Nicaraguan Resistance – the Contras- to finish their disarmament after those elections. A fair political formula for making viable the first free elections in Nicaragua and the demobilization of the Contras, an event that established peace. These elections were won by Doña Violeta Chamorro Barrios in February of 1990, facilitating national reconciliation.

Today we Nicaraguans are suffering the unpunished actions of illegally armed, hooded parapolice civilians who are shooting wantonly and exercising controls only permitted by law of the Police or Military authorities, a situation aggravated by common crime, taking advantage of the fact that the police are quartered in their stations. Recourse has been made of criminal gangmembers for activities in support of or against the government, and even terrorist attempts have appeared to plan attacks on public figures. This is information that the US government turned over to the Police and the Army in May, where it was mentioned as objectives Ms. Laura Dogu, the US Ambassador, Mons. Silvio Báez, and myself. All this situation has imposed a terrifying unofficial state of siege in the country.

In order to urgently achieve peace the historic opportunity is presented of a new political symmetry, that the President Daniel Ortega immediately order to use all the power of the order of the State and Government to disactivate the parapolice forces and any other illegal force, and in correspondence with the Bishops and the Civic Alliance, exhort the protestors that they lift all the barricades no matter how just their motives may be, beause they are illegal and hurt the human rights of their fellow citizens and foreigners by blocking their free movement. This pacification responds to the national and international clamour that demands it and the national dialogue is promoting.

All we Nicaraguans want a peaceful solution to the tragic crisis that we are suffering, and President Daniel Ortega by constitutionally advancing the Presidential elections for the coming year says yes to peace. Thus our country wil be encouraged and surprising the world will quickly recover, boosting small, medium and large economy, foreign investment and tourism. Doing an assessment of everything done since 1990 within the framework of a national agreement is a pressing need, and it will be the government that the people elect in these elections who must call for the national agreement to reach a consensus on a humanistic plan for the nation that strengthens values, democratic education and culture, social and solidarity economics, institutional ethics, the strategic democratic direction that gives dignity to our people and saves our privileged nature.

Let us honor those fallen yesterday and today, let us be in solidarity with their suffering families, with our people and their young students who demand peace with full liberty with the same fervor of the young Sandinista student Camilo Ortega Saavadra who gave his life defending the heroic people of Masaya and Monimbó.

On Tuesday June 26th the Papal Nuncio Mons. Stanislaw Waldemar received me and I gave him a letter that I wrote to Pope Francis, saying that in these painful times maybe it might be necessary for him to come to Nicaragua and help us to implement his profound words: “Dialogue-Pardon-Reconciliation” to give peace and happiness to all his Nicaraguan children.


General Humberto Ortega Saavadra          Managua, July 4, 2018

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