San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Nicaragua's Ortega defends military ties with Russia

MANAGUA, Nicaragua – Nicaragua’s president Saturday defended his country’s right to strengthen its military with Russian help, seemingly backtracking on statements earlier in the week shrugging off suggestions of increased cooperation.

Daniel Ortega said Nicaragua was “committed to further strengthening and modernizing the army” with the help of any country willing to provide aid, especially in respect to the Central American nation’s fight against drug trafficking.

In remarks during a military exercise closed to press but broadcast on a local channel, Ortega said Russia has in recent years granted “extraordinary” and “sustained” cooperation “without putting a single condition.”

He did not give details of an agreement between Nicaragua and Russia, but on March 27, Russia’s ambassador in Managua confirmed Moscow is interested in building a military resupply base in Nicaragua.

Russian defense chief Sergei Shoigu has said that Russia is weighing increasing its military presence in countries including Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela — particularly bases to refuel Russian warplanes far from home.

Nicaragua Army Chief General Julio Áviles had said this was just “speculation.”

Russia has faced international condemnation over its actions in Crimea, which has switched to Moscow from Ukraine after pro-Russian forces seized the peninsula.

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Ben, you clearly prefer to be dictated to. You wish for a leader that is never questioned and tells you what to think and do, never accepting your dissent. You like to criticize but you also enjoy letting everyone hear your pathetic comments. I think you should move to Nica and you can live under ortegas never ending rule. Then you too can suck up to Russia and Iran. The few nations on earth that suppress free thought and human rights. You have a simple mind, Ben Ben…

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Russia is better than the US any day. Look at Costa Rica Intel is leaving and people are getting screwed in Costa RIca. Now Costa Rica will have 10% unemployment. I hope for a new leader in Costa Rica. USA hates left leaning goverment. All the stupied US citizens go back to your country.

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Andy Snyder

Intel is a private corporation, not the U.S. government. The USA has many problems but we still have fairly free speech. In Nicaragua, Russia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, etc..If you speak out against the government, watch out! You may be jailed or worse. Costa Rica better wake up and start fixing some of their problems just like we need to do in the USA.

Note: I don’t see how the USA hates left leaning governments since our current president, Obama, is left leaning himself.

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