Nicaragua has lodged a complaint with the UN against the U.S. for its refusal to comply with a ruling by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordering it to compensate Managua for its support of a notorious death squad in the 1980s.

The announcement was made by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega at a ceremony in Managua commemorating the 37th anniversary of the ruling by the International Court of Justice, which condemned the U.S. for carrying out military and paramilitary activities in and against Nicaragua.

“We will go to court to accuse the United States so that they repair the damage they have done to Nicaragua as much as possible,” said Mr. Ortega.

He said the decision was made despite friendly nations advising him that taking the matter to the UN will be an exercise in futility. 


“When we talked about going to court to sue the United States, even brotherly nations, friendly nations, told us: that is a lost case, you will not even be able to make any progress there in court. The Court has undoubtedly been a point of reference in the battle for independence, for the sovereignty of Nicaragua, in the face of the recourse of the powers, of the use of force, we have defended ourselves with the force of law.”

The Nicaraguan Foreign Ministry has written a letter to UN chief Antonio Guterres, calling on the body to make the U.S. pay its long-overdue debt to Nicaragua.

The United States has long been accused of interfering in the internal affairs of Nicaragua, as well as many other Latin America nations.

President Ortega came to power in 1979 with the victory of the Sandinista Revolution that toppled U.S.-backed dictator Anastasio Somoza.

Then-U.S. President Ronald Reagan, citing the threat of an expansion of Cuban and Soviet influence in the region, signed off on U.S. financing for a right-wing militia, called the Contras, to launch cross-border attacks against the Sandinistas.The ICJ in 1986 held that the U.S. had violated international law by supporting the Contras and by mining Nicaragua’s harbors.

The United States refused to participate in the proceedings, and following the judgment withdrew from the ICJ.

The U.S. also blocked enforcement of the judgment by the UN Security Council and thereby prevented Nicaragua from receiving any compensation.

Mr. Ortega, who helped depose the Somoza dictatorship in the late 1970s, has been in power for 16 consecutive years. He served as president in the 1980s before losing power in 1990. He, however, staged a stunning comeback in 2007. (