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Cablegate: Suggestions for Defamation of Religion in the Un

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OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMU #1153 3561348
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 221348Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MANAGUA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0321
INFO RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA IMMEDIATE
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES IMMEDIATE
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO IMMEDIATE
RUEHMU/AMEMBASSY MANAGUA

C O N F I D E N T I A L MANAGUA 001153

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 2019/12/22
TAGS: PHUM PREL KISL KDEM PGOV OPDC NU
SUBJECT: Suggestions for Defamation of Religion in the UN

REF: A) STATE 128320; B) MANAGUA 1127; C) MANAGUA 1123
D) MANAGUA 599; E) USUN NEW YORK 1133

CLASSIFIED BY: RobertJCallahan, Ambassador, State, Embassy Managua;
REASON: 1.4(B), (D)

1. (C) President Daniel Ortega's government generally votes
against the U.S. position in the United Nations, and in 2008 voted
against the U.S. position in the important issues as described in
the Department's "Voting Practices in the United Nations 2008." As
noted in ref E, Nicaragua (along with Cuba and Venezuela) "have
aligned themselves with the most radical states in the UN ... [and]
have become among the most vociferous anti-American delegations in
the organization." Regarding the defamation of religion issue, the
Ortega Administration has voted in opposition to the U.S. position
since 2007 in the Third Committee, the Human Rights Council, and
the UNGA plenary. In the latest demarche delivered to the Foreign
Ministry on the issue, the Director for the Americas noted that
given Nicaragua's voting record under President Daniel Ortega, it
is likely Nicaragua would vote against the U.S. position (ref C).


2. (C) In general, direct USG engagement with the Government of
Nicaragua regarding votes in the UN has not proven successful and
at times has proven counterproductive. The Ortega administration
also has not proven susceptible to international pressure - e.g.,
it has withstood pressure regarding the 2008 municipal election
fraud although it has cost it financial assistance from the United
States and Europe (ref D). Moreover, the Ortega administration has
not proven responsive to the concerns of human rights organizations
or others outside the governing Sandinista National Liberation
Front (FSLN). Given the government's attitude toward the United
States in the UN generally, and on the defamation of religion issue
specifically, we recommend engaging the Government of Nicaragua
through other Latin American countries such as Argentina, Brazil or
Chile. These countries are likely to hold more sway with
Nicaragua, and the Ortega administration is more likely to follow
them on this debate.
CALLAHAN

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