Spain will offer citizenship to freed political prisoners from Nicaragua | CNN

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Spain will provide a path to citizenship for 222 Nicaraguan political prisoners who have been not too long ago launched from jail and lots of of whom have been despatched to america on Thursday, a spokesman for Spain’s Ministry of International Affairs instructed CNN.

The spokesman didn’t instantly reply to a CNN query concerning the main points of the provide, together with how shortly they might obtain citizenship. The spokesman spoke on the situation of anonymity, citing native skilled norms.

Questions have mounted on the destiny of the greater than 200 new arrivals to the US, who have been additionally stripped of their Nicaraguan citizenship on Thursday.

Their launch adopted years of repression by the Nicaragua’s President Daniel Ortega. The authoritarian chief has jailed dozens of opposition figures and activists, notably within the lead as much as the final elections in November of 2021.

US State Division spokesperson Ned Worth mentioned Thursday that the people, who all flew to Dulles Worldwide airport in Washington, shall be granted humanitarian parole for 2 years, permitting them to stay US and giving them the time to use for asylum if they want.

Every of the people who left Nicaragua “voluntarily consented to journey,” and “there have been two people who, on their very own volition, selected to not journey to america,” Worth mentioned.

Among the many launched prisoners is one American, in keeping with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, who welcomed their transfer, calling it a product of American diplomacy.

Ortega on Thursday mentioned their launch was not negotiated with Washington. “We simply wished them to go,” Ortega mentioned.

After calling the discharge of the prisoners “a message for peace and stability for Nicaragua,” the 77-year-old chief mentioned the unique listing of these to be launched contained 228 names, however the US had vetoed not less than 4 prisoners as a result of they’d been convicted of frequent crimes.

Bishop Rolando Alvarez, a high-profile member of the Catholic Church who has lengthy opposed the Ortega regime and was detained in August 2022, was additionally attributable to be launched, however he refused, Ortega mentioned. As an alternative, 11 members of the clergy have been launched on Thursday morning.

Questions have mounted on the fate of the more than 200 new arrivals to the US, who were also stripped of their Nicaraguan citizenship on Thursday.

The political prisoners have been greeted by US officers, activists and members of the Nicaraguan diaspora at Dulles airport.

One of many arrivals was political activist Felix Maradiaga, who instructed CNN en Espanol that they solely realized what was occurring when by the aircraft.

“They made us signal some paperwork saying in a single single line that we have been leaving the nation of our free will with no additional clarification,” he mentioned. “On one aspect what occurred is surprising, however on the opposite, I’m overwhelmed by this second, the chance to hug our household. Personally, I haven’t seen my daughter in additional than three years.”

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