Nicaragua marks Sandinista anniversary with regional leaders
MANAGUA — Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega celebrated the 35th anniversary of the Sandinista revolution late Saturday with a giant rally accompanied by regional leftist leaders.
Thousands of supporters gathered at the Plaza La Fé, north of Managua, to celebrate the Sandinista rebel victory in 1979 over the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza, whose family had run Nicaragua like their own estate since 1936.
The most prominent guest was Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, whose oil-rich nation provides millions of dollars in aid to impoverished Nicaragua.
Maduro said the Sandinista revolution “scored a great triumph over the strategy of imperial domination in the continent” and paved the way for other revolutionary movements.
Guests of honor at the event included the president of El Salvador, former leftist guerrilla Salvador Sánchez Cerén; Honduran President Juan Hernández; Cuban vice president Ramiro Valdés, and former presidents of Honduras, Guatemala and Panama.
Ortega, now 68, was one of the rebel Sandinista leaders that toppled Somoza. He was Nicaragua’s leader 1979-1990, and returned to power in 2007.
Maduro also expressed support for Nicaragua’s plans to build an interoceanic canal to rival the Panama Canal.
In early July, Ortega endorsed a route chosen by a Chinese firm commissioned to dig a $40 billion canal linking the Caribbean and the Pacific.
The canal is expected to create thousands of jobs, a vital boost for this country of six million — the second poorest in the Americas after Haiti — where half of the population lives in poverty.
You may be interested
The Tico Times Weekly Digest: March 18, 2019Alexander Villegas - March 18, 2019
OIJ joins the investigation into two police officers, the 737 Max is banned from Costa Rican airspace and some awesome…
Volunteer firefighters mobilize to protect Nosara from wildfiresAlejandro Zúñiga - March 18, 2019
Fueled by strong winds and unusually dry conditions, wildfires near Nosara, Guanacaste have forced a community of volunteer firefighters to…
Costa Ricans star as FC Cincinnati wins first MLS matchAlejandro Zúñiga - March 17, 2019
The match may have been played in Ohio, but all eyes were on Costa Rica’s stars as FC Cincinnati defeated…