San José, Costa Rica, since 1956
Border dispute

Costa Rica finishes work to close artificial canal built by Nicaragua in disputed territory

Costa Rica successfully blocked an artificial canal that Nicaragua opened in 2013 in disputed territory near the mouth of the San Juan River, Costa Rica Foreign Affairs Minister Manuel González reported Wednesday.

The canal is one of several sources of an ongoing border conflict between Costa Rica and Nicaragua that’s scheduled for final hearings before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) next week.

González said the work to block the canal prevented major environmental damage that would have been virtually impossible to repair.

Read all our coverage of the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border dispute

The canal, if completed, would have channeled water from the San Juan River, which is in Nicaragua, into the Caribbean. The area is considered sensitive wetland habitat of international importance.

The repair work done by a 62-member Costa Rican environmental crew consisted of blocking the canal at a 19-meter wide spot by piling 900-kilo sand bags across the water in three rows, González told reporters.

The Foreign Affairs Minister reported that Nicaraguan military personnel observed the work from that country’s territory.

González expressed optimism about the upcoming hearings before the international court.

“We believe the legal and technical position (Costa Rica) has held for almost five years…is quite solid,” González said.

The conflict between the two neighbors erupted in 2010 when Costa Rica took Nicaragua to the ICJ, accusing it of having militarily invaded Costa Rican territory and caused environmental damage.

Nicaragua dismissed the allegation and, in turn, accused Costa Rica of violating its sovereignty and causing environmental damage to the San Juan River by building a road that runs parallel to its bank.


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A Dull Roar

Ben, you made me laugh, because it’s not *that* canal the article is about. Hope you feel better after your rant, though.

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Felix Aguilar

I agree with everything Ben is saying. I’m Nicaraguan and I grew up in the states for the last 30 years. Been to Costa Rica a couple of times and love the country and every Costa Rican that I have met has been nice except for one tour guy.

It seems like Costa Rican are always saying native things about Nicaraguan to keep their country looking great for their own benefit. Leave Nicaragua alone and worry about your own problems. We all have problems and Nicaragua has their with the government that runs it. I Love my Nicaragua and it’s rich culture and the land that outsider seems not to know right now about it..

If the Costa Rican always talk Native about the Nicaraguans doesn’t really help the people of Nicaragua succeed in their own country. If Costa Rican stop talking bad about Nicaraguans we wouldn’t need to go across the boarder and find work.. Nicaragua is as good as Costa Rica and maybe in the future better. Nicaragua has a lot to offer, we should ask the Costa Rican who go over to Nicaragua and vacation. They keep on coming back, I’m just saying.

It’s my option and we all have options

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The Costa Rican goverment should leave Nicaraqua alone and let them build there Canal. Did Costa Rica tell the US or France to stop building the Panama Canal? NO Costa Rica sent people to help build the Panama Canal. Nicaraqua has a right to build a canal and they have a right to have there own army just like Costa Rica has a right not to have and army. Every thime the Costa Rican goverment needs to spin news from the bad economy or the high crime rate they use Nicaraqua and say they are attacking us or killing the enviroment. Costa Rica needs to start looking at there own problems of High unempolyment and Corupt goverment official and corupt and Lazy police. Nicaraqua is far from perfect and they have a bad history. Costa Rica goverment needs to start looking at solving the problem in its own country. Costa Rican goverment needs to start looking at your own problem. Costa Rica say they are enviromental place but the Costa Rican goverment can´t even start a national Recycle program. Costa Rica is all spin and Lies. Yesterday i heard a Costa Rican say nothing will ever change because the Ruling families in Costa Rica like it that way. He said keep wages low and do very little to make life better for everyone thats the Costa Rican way.

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Ben, you usually post idiotic, nonsensical things, so this is probably expected of you. But you should at least read the article before posting. Because it’s very clear that you haven’t.

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