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Friday, July 12, 2024

Nicaragua’s Ortega Empowers Son to Forge China Agreements

The president of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega, granted this Tuesday, “full powers” to his son Laureano Ortega to sign agreements with China. “Full powers are granted to comrade Laureano Ortega Murillo, presidential advisor” to sign these agreements, indicated the Nicaraguan government in two presidential decrees published in the official gazette La Gaceta.

Laureano Ortega was authorized to sign a memorandum of understanding with the China International Development Cooperation Agency to oversee the “planning of cooperation” between both countries for the period 2025-2027. He was also authorized to sign an economic and technical cooperation agreement with China.

Laureano Ortega Murillo, 42, is the son of Nicaragua’s president and his wife and vice president, Rosario Murillo, and serves as a presidential advisor. Last December, China and Nicaragua agreed to elevate their relations to the level of “strategic partnership,” following a phone conversation between Ortega and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Nicaragua and China launched a Free Trade Agreement in January.

In 2021, Managua established relations with China after breaking ties with Taiwan, which Beijing considers as its own territory that it must retake, even by force if necessary. Since then, the world’s second-largest economy has supported the Nicaraguan government, which faces sanctions and condemnation from the United States and European countries following the 2018 protests against Ortega, which left more than 300 dead, according to the UN.

The two governments agreed that, as part of their strategic partnership, they will strengthen “exchanges and cooperation” in security and technology as well. The Chinese government and companies will also participate in the construction of public housing, road infrastructure projects, airports, railways, and energy.

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