Nicaragua: Human rights defender stigmatized and publicly discredited by government authorities

As part of a campaign carried out by Nicaraguan government officials to stigmatize and publicly discredit Vilma Nuñez, the director and founder of the Nicaraguan Centre for Human Rights (Centro Nicaragüense de Derechos Humanos, CENIDH), on 8 March 2017, 9 government officials, among them six government ministers, wrote a letter to the United States ambassador to Nicaragua in response to Vilma Nuñez’s nomination for the International Women of Courage Award, presented by the United States government Department of State. The officials writing the letter claimed that her nomination was an “act of hostility” and added that Nuñez’s work has insulted and offended the people and government of Nicaragua. For Nuñez this is a “direct attack from the government” which puts her at risk, given the current volatile situation in terms of human rights in the country.

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