Next week, millions of people around the world will be glued to their TV screens and social media feeds, watching as the USA decides who will lead the most powerful country on earth.Around 3,000 kilometers away, in a much smaller nation in the middle of Central America, another election will take place just a couple of days earlier. Although Nicaragua’s presidential election lacks the fame of the Clinton-Trump race, it is every bit as controversial.
In the midst of unusual political tension and apathy, Nicaraguans will go to the polls on Sunday Nov. 6 to vote in elections marked by the absence of the main opposition force and international election observers.
The seventh consecutive nomination of Daniel Ortega as the governing party’s candidate to the presidency in Nicaragua, and the withdrawal from the race of a large part of the opposition, alleging lack of guarantees for genuine elections, has brought about the country’s worst political crisis since the end of the civil war in 1990.
Nearly three years after Nicaragua granted a 50-year concession to the Chinese consortium HKND to build and operate an interoceanic canal, the megaproject has stalled, partly due to a severe drought that threatens the rivers and lake that will form part of the canal.
A three-year drought, added to massive deforestation in the past few decades, has dried up most of Nicaragua’s water sources and has led to an increasingly severe water supply crisis.
On the first day of the 2015 Climate Conference, Nicaragua became the first country openly refusing to comply with the United Nations mandate to submit a climate pledge.
The international scientific community’s fears about the damage that will be caused by Nicaragua’s future interoceanic canal have been reinforced by the environmental impact assessment, which warns of serious environmental threats posed by the megaproject.
A group of poor women from Ometepe, a beautiful tropical island in the centre of Lake Nicaragua, decided to dedicate themselves to recycling garbage as part of an initiative that did not bring the hoped-for economic results but inspired the entire community to keep this biosphere reserve clean.
After living in the shadows, thousands of Nicaraguan sex workers have broken their silence, won support from state institutions and gained new respect for their rights.
Nicaragua, the Central American country with the most abundant water sources, and where water – “agua” in Spanish – is even part of its name, is suffering one of its worst water crises in half a century, fuelled by climate change, deforestation and erosion.
A new Family Code that went into effect in Nicaragua this month represents an overall improvement in terms of the rights of Nicaraguans. However, it has one major gap: it fails to recognise same-sex marriage, and as a result it closes the doors to adoption by gay couples.
The new interoceanic canal being built in Nicaragua has brought good and bad news for the scientific community: new species and archeological sites have been found and knowledge of the local ecosystems has grown, but the project poses a huge threat to the environment.
Nicaragua, the second-poorest country in the Americas, is tapping into its depleted coffers to upgrade its ageing military fleet with costly new equipment from Russia – a move that has sparked controversy at home and concern among the country’s Central American neighbours.
Despite the aggression and abuse she has suffered at the University of El Salvador because she is a trans woman, Daniela Alfaro is determined to graduate with a degree in health education.
Víctor Sánchez doesn’t want gold or the comfortable future income he was promised.He just wants to live the life he has always lived on his farm along the Banks of the Las Lajas river – but the river is slated to become part of the route followed by the Nicaragua Interoceanic Grand Canal.