Outside Nicaragua, U.S. observers downplay dramatic election results in support of Ortega

Outside of Nicaragua, there was surprisingly little fanfare Saturday as the leftist Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega won reelection in a hotly contested vote, although the opposition protests that had rocked the country for nearly two months went largely unnoticed.

From Telesur, AFP:

Hector Alberto Galindo, a defense industry executive in Managua, described seeing cars full of youths waving flags in the pouring rain Sunday with sandbags while he stood among them. “They started to attack our families,” he said.

Independent election observers said voters’ rights had been trampled on during the November 6 vote but blamed the government for poor planning for the voting process.

Neither the president nor his closest supporter have made any concession and Ortega’s re-election has opened the door to major tensions that some say could spark an uprising similar to the one that began in April, sparking fears of another humanitarian crisis.

Humberto Piedrahita, a journalist and novelist who fled Nicaragua four months ago because of political threats, said his cousin had received threats from pro-government groups to vote in favour of Ortega, or else.

“It’s really dangerous for everyone. Ortega can come back and fix things,” he said.

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