Nicaragua at UN: Pandemic exposes 'irrational, oppressive capitalist system,' US/EU sanctions are 'savage' crime against humanity
At the United Nations, Nicaragua's Sandinista government condemned US and EU imperialism, called for climate reparations and decolonization, and said the Covid-19 pandemic exposed "savage capitalism"
Nicaragua’s Sandinista government used its platform at the United Nations General Assembly to condemn the unjust global capitalist system, and to call to create a new international economic model built on equality, solidarity, and peace.
Foreign Minister Denis Moncada delivered a fiery speech in the UN headquarters on September 27.
Moncada emphasized that the Covid-19 pandemic had exposed the “irrational and oppressive system of capitalist exploitation,” in which rich imperialist countries hoard vaccines while building more and more weapons of mass destruction.
“It is part of the heartless creation of savage capitalism, an insatiable desire for accumulation,” he said.
Nicaragua condemned the constant US meddling in its internal affairs, noting that the imperial attacks hinder its fight against poverty, “which is the world's cruelest pandemic.”
“It is not the US empire that elects the government of Nicaragua; it is the Nicaraguan people,” Moncada declared.
The top Nicaraguan diplomat condemned the illegal, “savage” sanctions the United States and European Union have imposed on his nation and on countries around the world.
“In times of pandemic, these measures become a crime against humanity,” Moncada said.
Nicaragua affirmed its solidarity with the more than 2 billion people living in countries suffering under these US or EU sanctions.
Moncada reiterated his nation’s call for global de-nuclearization, warning of the dangers of nuclear weapons.
On the subject of climate change, Nicaragua emphasized that imperialist countries in the Global North, as the largest carbon emitters, are the most responsible, and thus must pay reparations and bear the majority of the burden in combatting the ecological “catastrophe.”
Moncada also addressed the crisis of people fleeing Central America (although Nicaragua does not contribute much to that migration crisis, and most of it comes from neighboring Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala). He called for respecting the rights of immigrants and refugees, while emphasizing that many are in fact fleeing due to Western-fueled wars and coups, as well as Western-imposed neoliberal policies that destroyed their local economies.
Nicaragua criticized the United States and Europe for “their culture of war.” It was an ironic jab at Western colonialists who spread racist tropes claiming people in the Global South have a “culture of violence.”
The Sandinista government likewise used its international stage to call for independence for Puerto Rico and an end to US and British colonialism in Latin America.
At the same time, Nicaragua affirmed its “total solidarity” with Palestine, Syria, Iran, the DPRK, Russia, and Western Sahara.
I translated highlights of Moncada’s speech below, in which Nicaragua calls to build a peaceful, multipolar international order based on multilateralism, non-intervention, and respect for national sovereignty.
Pandemic exposes “savage capitalism”
“This global health crisis continues to erode our efforts to overcome existing problems and challenges, such as poverty, hunger, and malnutrition, inequality, unemployment, and climate change, produced by the irrational and oppressive system of capitalist exploitation.”
“The inhumane hoarding of Covid-19 vaccines is unacceptable, on the part of developed countries, which prevents the fair and equal distribution for everyone, including developing countries. It is necessary and fair to guarantee technology transfers and financial resources, as well as declaring the vaccines a common good for humanity.”
“The pandemic that affects all countries on our Mother Earth has proven the need to create a new international economic model, fundamentally based on inclusion, equity, social justice, respectful equality between states and governments, prioritizing the eradication of poverty, and healthcare as a universal right for humanity, demanding that the resources that are used for war, aggression, and destabilization of countries are instead used, in a humanistic spirit, for life, for peace, for the security and progress of the people.”
“It is unacceptable that, in the middle of this pandemic, they continue modernizing weapons of mass destruction, putting all of humanity at risk.”
“It is part of the heartless creation of savage capitalism, an insatiable desire for accumulation, at the cost of peace, international security, and human life.”
“The US empire doesn’t elect our government”
“Nicaragua is a free, independent, and sovereign state, but imperialist powers still attack our project of national development, and undermine our efforts, above all, our project to eradicate poverty, which is the world's cruelest pandemic.”
“In Nicaragua, the first Sunday of November this year, the Nicaraguan people will elect our authorities with their vote, with the participation, with gender equality, of 15 political parties, both national and regional parties.”
“It is not the US empire that elects the government of Nicaragua; it is the Nicaraguan people, confirming its commitment to continue working for peace, security, and the tranquility of people, families, and communities.”
“Savage” US/EU sanctions are “crime against humanity”
“The illegal unilateral coercive measures must cease immediately, to guarantee stability, peace, and development, for families, peoples, and nations.”
“These coercive and aggressive policies of the empires constitute a savage obstacle for the eradication of poverty, and to advance to sustainable development.”
“In times of pandemic, these measures become a crime against humanity, on the part of those who impose them.”
“For Nicaragua, they are unacceptable; we reject them, and we reiterate our condemnation and our solidarity with the more than 2 billion people who suffer from these sanctions.”
Global South needs reparations to fight climate change
“While our people work, resist, respond, and recover from the pandemic, we should not forget the challenges that the threat of climate change poses, and its devastating impact, particularly in developing countries, a threat that will continue even after overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic and recuperating the economy.”
“To preserve and defend our Mother Earth's right to life, concrete results are needed in the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, that are based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, that strengthen the responsibility and fulfillment of the commitment to climate justice, and the indispensable policy of reparations, as a form of direct and unconditional cooperation.”
“If we allow time to pass without developed countries fulfilling their commitments, the damage to Mother Earth caused by global warming will be irreversible.”
“Being those who are historically responsible for this catastrophe, it is extremely important that the biggest [fossil fuel] emitters, who are responsible for the plunder, damage, and the imbalances recognize our losses and harm, contributing to the recuperation of our ecosystems.”
“The biggest emitters have that historic responsibility.”
Independence for Puerto Rico
“Nicaragua advocates for the full decolonization of our continent, including the decolonization of the people of Puerto Rico, and the return of Argentina's sovereignty over the Islas Malvinas [UK-colonized Falkland Islands].”