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Press Statement
Robert Wood, Deputy Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 10, 2008


Irregularities in Nicaraguan Municipal Elections

We view with concern reports by domestic election observation groups and opposition parties of widespread irregularities at voting stations throughout Nicaragua. Among the more worrisome charges is that in many cases, the opposition parties had no access to the centers where the votes were being tabulated.

As we have noted, the Supreme Electoral Council's decision not to accredit credible international election observers undercut observation efforts. This circumstance, combined with instances of intimidation, violence, and harassment of opposition political party members and NGO representatives, created conditions that were not conducive to free and fair elections.

Article 23 of the Inter-American Democratic Charter holds member states responsible for "ensuring free and fair electoral processes." This is a standard that we expect the Government of Nicaragua to uphold.

2008/942

Released on November 10, 2008

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