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State Department Must Justify Waivers to Nicaragua, Ros-Lehtinen Says


Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, made the following statement regarding the State Department's consideration of using its authority to "waive" certain prohibitions in U.S. law in order to clear the way for economic assistance to be provided to Nicaragua. Last month, Ros-Lehtinen released a statement opposing President Obama's FY 2013 budget proposal to increase development assistance to Nicaragua. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:

"Five months after the fraudulent elections, the Obama administration continues to ignore the severe threats to democracy in Nicaragua under Daniel Ortega. It is up to the Obama Administration to justify the use of these two pending waivers by documenting how they advance U.S. interests and priorities. I do not believe these waivers will bring democracy, transparency, and rule of law back to Nicaragua.

"The U.S. must make it clear to the Ortega regime that his actions last year in violation of the Nicaraguan Constitution are unacceptable."

NOTE: The confiscated properties waiver prohibits U.S. economic assistance or support in international financial institutions to any country in which U.S. citizens have not received compensation for confiscated property. The fiscal transparency waiver prohibits State and USAID from providing any bilateral economic assistance or international security assistance to a government that fails to publicly disclose its national budget.

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