Created: 5/5/1988

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Thia waakly Situation Report la prepared by theand Nicaragua Branches, Office of African andAnalyala. Thia paper waa coordinated withof Operatlona. Commenta and queriesand may be directed to the Chief.Division. ALA,|

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Perspectivei Verification Huddle

Honduraa abruptly has reversed ita threat to boycottCentral American Executive Commission meeting, clearingfor theeviewagreement toerificationwith two weeks to go, the Centralhave made no progress on two agendafor the three countries selected to givein verification and Nicaragua's proposal for afriendship treaty. The democracies also haveto involve themselves in verification aspects ofagreement,ispute between the twowith verifying theSecretary Generaland Cardinalwhether the US unilaterallyhumanitarian aid to the Nicaraguan insurgents.

Honduran officials told thew*ak th,t

Tegucigalpa was abandoning Its tactic ot suspending its participation in the peace process until Nicaragua withdraws its World Court suit because of fears of adverae international reaction. The moverip to the Hague and West Germany by Foreign Minister Lopez. The officials say that the policy switch does not Indicate an imminent deal with Nicaragua on the court case. We believe it reflects Lopez's failure to gain German agreement to pressure the Sandinistas to drop the case, as well as lack of support from the other Central American democracies.F

The democracies appear to be In no hurry to address verification issues that may hinge on the success of ongoing Nicaraguan cease-fire talka. The three countries which will assist withGermany, Canada, andreiterated to US officials thslr disinclination to do any serious planning until the Central Americana define thoir task more precisely. None of the three appears to envisage giving the UN responsibility, although they admit the possibility of some UN Involvement such as technical advice. Nicaragua probably will

push st tha Executive Commission meetingN role and President Ortega has already announced that he favora expanding the verification commission Itself toatin Americanordic country.

Although the democracies"except Hondurashave ducked the humanitarian eld iasue, Nicaragua could raise it at the Executive Commission. The Sandinistas are for the moment reneging on what the anti-Sandlnlsta rebels claim was an Informal agreement at Sapoa to allow private carriers to deliver US nonlethal aid. Managuaoost this week from the OAS Secretary General's letter to Secretary Shultz criticising the initiation of aid deliveries to rebels inside Honduraa and refusing to verify that they did not contain military supplies. Cardinal Obando, anxioua that Baena Soares is undercutting hie role in verifying compliance, publicly dlssaasociated hlmsslf from the Secretary General's position. He is likely to feel Increasingly Isolated, however, without expressions of support from outside Nicaragua.


A May Day march in Managua sponsored by Nicaragua'a opposition labor coalitionarticipants.

I Sandinlsta toughademonstrationoo people sponsored bylabor group the ease day. olice removed proteatlng labor unionistssiteunger '

The police arrested several labor leadera and blockaded

the building.

suspended newscastsay on at leaat three independent radio stations for eiqht dayn, according to the official press. TheRadio Corporaclon, Radio Catollca and Radioaccused of falsely reportingabor activist had

been tortured to death by police. ay, the

facilities of Radio Mundial were vandalised,

ozen labor activiats were arrested, and the following day some two dozen opposition leaders were detained.

A Wsersgu.aD opposition lawyer told

that repression in the Matagalpa region has grown rather than diminished since the state* of emergency was lifted in January. Re said the police routinely sentence individuals Involved in opposition activities to six-month Incommutable prison terms.

Sandlniata Directorate member Bayardo Area indicated that Nicaragua is considering holding municipal elections this

Arce told Hn

opposition leader that the Supreme Electoral Council had informed the government that it would need six months to prepareote. Arce added that elections for the Central American Parliament could be held simultaneously if the other Central American countries were ready, as well.

The Honduran Congress approved onpril the treatyentral American Parliament. ongressional committee has been charged with meeting with regional counterparts to smooth out final details,imetable for implementation. | |

The five Central American vice presidents' meeting onpril in Costa Rica called for rapid approvalegional Parliament and requested West Europe and the UN to provide economic aid. The vice presidents also metelegation ofembers of the European Parliament, who according to press reportsillion to assist in the election and Installation of the Central American Parliament.


Nicaraguan cease-fire talks endedpril with onlyagreement to meet againay. refuaed to extend the currant truce andays andandinlsta proposal to haveCross serve as the conduit for humanitarian aid. claim the Sandinlstaa areough linethe talks and starve them into he insurgents also

refuse to hold tha next round in Managua, In part because of the repressive atmosphere there, and will insist on another venue,

The International Red Cross io avara that its survey of

Nicaraguan prisons In February did not Include state

aecurlty prisons and clandestine Jallaj"

*| The organization estimatesolitical prisoners are held In theae facilities and now believes that there are aa manyolitical prlaonera in total. The Red Cross haa protested the government'a misuse of its Februsry report.

Staff members of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights have reviewed nearly all the files of4 Nicaraguan prisoners who are former National Cuardaman,

IThe ataff will 'ivvuhiimiiu lu um comniiBBiun tjiix an truef these prisoners be released undsr the amnesty provlalons of the Sapoa agreement.

The distinguished citizen member of the Guatemalan National Reconciliation Commission publicly suggested that she would meet with rebel representatives this week


National Reconciliation

Members of the Central American National Reconciliationplanned toeminar in Costa RicaMay sponsored by the University of Centralneither Nicaraguan Cardinal

Obando nor Auxiliary Bishop Vivas will attend. Costa Ricajt President Arias is schsduled to meet vith the participants.

International Verification

AS Secretary General Baena Soares criticised theof humanitarian aid to Nicaraguaniolation of the Central Americanaccording to press. Cardinal Obando aaiddoes not reflect the opinion ofcommission oatablished In the Sapoaonly Baena Soares's personal Onpril, Baena traveled to Colombia, to

try to enlist Bogota's support of his effortsitness to the Sapoa agreement!-

Spanish Foreign Ministry officials told the US Embassy onpril that Spain haa not yet officially accepted the Central American invitation to form part of an international verification commission. Spain wants details on the probable composition of technical teams as wellense of the extent of Spain's commitment. Spanish officiala are meeting individually with Canada and West Germany andhree-way meeting will be held next week in Ottawa. I-

Nicaragua'a UN representatives have told Westthat the Central Americanpril provided final authorisationin verification by Weet Germany,

Central American democracies, nowsvex, nave in informed US Embassies that the ccnwnunigue must be ratified at the next meeting onay. West Germany's Foreign Minister has instructed the UN mission to proceed cautiouslyl

Nicaracruan Cardinal Obando outlined his plan for the church's role in verifying compliance vith the Sapoa accorday. Obando proposss to have five-member teams assigned to each of the seven cease-fire zones. Esch team will be headedishop.

Aid_to Insurgents

US shipments of non-lethal aid to antl-Sgndlnista

insurgents in Honduras Increased last week, according to

press reports.

bypriletric tons ofnaa been

distributed, including nine truckloads to troops in the Yamales area. F)

Costa Rlcan Minister of the Presidency Arias told US officials that an assistance program for Nicaraguan children and US funding for medical treatment of Nicaraguan combatants in Costa Rica may begin Immediately. The question of food deliveries to ths anti-Sandinista rebels is still under consideration.


UN officials haveommunique criticizing Honduran military presence around refugee camps for Salvadorans in the wakehooting incident at Coloraocagua camp. Nevertheless, the statement commended the government foroard of inquiry and turning the accused soldier overilitary tribunal for trial. The US Embassy in Tegucigslpa comments that the communiqueetter from the UN High Commissioner to President Azcona tend to reinforce the refugees' claims that they are entitled to extraterritoriality.

Other Dayelopmenta

The Honduran press onprililitary communique accusing Nlcara<3uaattacking the town of


Suji,loa department, resulting Inounded.

Nicaraguan mdlan Insurgents carrisd out tnn accacm ana the Honduran allegations sre intended to distract attention focused on Tegucigalpa for allowing aid to reach anti-Sandlnista rebels. Onpril, Managua denied having crossed the border and asked for permission to inspect refugee camps in Honduras because of alleged Nicaragua official harassment of Miskito refugees.

Representatives of the five Centraleeting of the UN Generalfor May 11

raft resolution does not contain contentloua or

political language but calla for the Secretary General toechanism to Implement the Special Economic Assistance Plan for the region. The Central American vice presidents have announced that they will attend the session to urge support for the plan. |



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