EU "regrets and rejects" Nicaragua's decision to cut ties with Netherlands
The European Union “profoundly regrets and rejects” Nicaragua’s “unilateral decision” to cut diplomatic ties with the Netherlands and eject the Head of the EU delegation to Nicaragua from the country, Josep Borrel, the EU’s foreign affairs coordinator, said in a statement. He also expressed the EU’s “unwavering support” to the Dutch government.
Nicaragua suddenly severed diplomatic ties with the Netherlands on Friday, accusing the Netherlands of “repeated meddling,” “interventionism,” and “neocolonialism.” President Daniel Ortega also said that the Dutch ambassador to the area “addressed the Nicaraguans as if Nicaragua were a Dutch colony.”
According to the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the main reason for the fallout was the Netherlands’ decision to stop financing the construction of a hospital in Bilwi. “This project has been on hold since 2018 due to the deteriorating situation in the field of human rights,” the Ministry said.
On Thursday, the Netherlands decided to stop the project because the human rights situation had not improved. Nicaragua did not take the message delivered by Dutch Ambassador Christine Pirenne well, the Ministry said. “It is regrettable that Nicaragua has chosen to respond in this disproportionate way to a critical message about democracy and human rights,” the Ministry said.
The European Union supports the Netherlands in this situation, Borrel said on Sunday. “These hostile, unwarranted actions will not only affect the bilateral relations between Nicaragua and the EU and its Member States but will also lead to further international isolation of Nicaragua.” The EU is considering the appropriate way forward and will respond “firmly and proportionally.”
The EU hopes that “genuine dialogue between the government and opposition” can solve the political crisis in Nicaragua, Borrel said. “The EU reaffirms its continued commitment to the Nicaraguan people and to defending democracy, the rule of law, and human rights. The EU remains open to dialogue with Nicaragua, provided that this dialogue is conducted in a respectful manner.”