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Nicaragua’s finance minister resigns, replaced by deputy Gallardo

By Thomson Reuters Jun 20, 2024 | 10:36 AM

SAN JOSE (Reuters) – Bruno Gallardo will be Nicaragua’s new Finance Minister, replacing Ivan Acosta, who was sanctioned by the United States in 2020, the nation’s official gazette showed on Thursday.

Gallardo, a 79-year-old former union leader, previously served as deputy finance minister and had been signing off on credit agreements with international organizations since Acosta was sanctioned.

Acosta had held his post since 2012. He was sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury for financially supporting the administration of President Daniel Ortega and for reportedly threatening banks to not participate in an opposition-organized strike to free political prisoners in 2019.

Local media outlets Confidencial and La Prensa had reported in recent days that Acosta’s house had been raided by police, suggesting he may have fallen out of favor with the president.

The government waged a bloody crackdown on anti-government protests in 2018, during which more than 360 people died mostly at the hands of police and other security forces, according to tallies by rights groups.

Since then, dissidents from broad sectors of society, including journalists and religious figures, have been jailed.

In 2021, Washington imposed sanctions and denounced Ortega’s re-election as a “sham” after all of his top opponents were rounded up and detained by police in the months leading up to the vote.

(Reporting by Ismael Lopez; Editing by Stephen Eisenhammer)