Nicaragua. In the municipal elections held on November 4,
the ruling party won the Sandinista Front for National
Liberation (FSLN) big. No less than 134 of Nicaragua's 153
mayoral positions are now held by the party, including the
capital Managua and all 17 provincial capitals except one.
The victory in Managua was devastating; FSLN candidate Daysi
Torres won no less than 83% of the vote, and in León the
victory was even greater, 87%. In total, FSLN received 75%
of all votes cast in the municipal elections.
As has been the case on a regular basis since President
Daniel Ortega came to power in 2007, the elections were
filled with allegations of electoral fraud by both the
domestic opposition and the United States, with violence,
riots and demonstrations as a result and political concerns
over the credibility of the election process. In the
Matagalp province, clashes between protesters and police led
to deaths. According to
countryaah, the police's actions were also criticized by the
opposition as a reflection of the fact that the FSLN has
dominated the judiciary and the Electoral Commission since
the 1980s. However, there was never any mention of
international reprisals, such as after the 2008 election,
when the US and the EU suspended aid to Nicaragua pending
investigations into electoral fraud.
In early June, President Ortega announced plans to revive
the more than 100-year-old idea of creating a water link
between the Caribbean and the Pacific. The project would
involve the construction of a canal from Lake Nicaragua to
the west, but also that the San Juan River would become an
important sea route to the east, creating concern in
neighboring Costa Rica, with which Nicaragua has a border
dispute in the area. In early July, Congress approved the
project, which is estimated to cost $ 30 billion.