Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi has friends in faraway places – Managua, Nicaragua, to be precise.
Nicaragua has announced that its former foreign minister, Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann, a suspended Catholic priest with a penchant for fiery speeches, will represent Libyan interests at the United Nations. D’Escoto was elected to preside over the 63rd session of the U.N. General Assembly late last decade. Libya picked D'Escoto because its own diplomat, Ali Abdussalam Trek, couldn't get a visa to enter the United States.
Nicaraguans learned of the move in an announcement from President Daniel Ortega’s wife, Rosario Murillo, on the webpage that they share (see here, in Spanish).
In her letter, Murillo said that Father D’Escoto “has received from President/Commander Daniel precise instructions to accept this nomination and represent the people and government of Libya in their struggle to re-establish peace and defend their legitimate right to resolve their national conflict without foreign interference.”
“At the same time, Father D’Escoto will support our Libyan brothers in their diplomatic battle to have their sovereignty and self-determination respected, currently abused by the (Great) powers, which once again attack the independence and peace of the people,” the statement said.
Ortega, the mustachioed former revolutionary who helped topple the Somoza dictatorship in 1979, shares with Gadhafi an appetite for staying in power. Ortega was elected in 2006 to a second term as president (after ruling during much of the 1979-1990 revolution) and is overriding constitutional prohibitions to run again later this year.
Gadhafi, the longest serving Arab ruler, has governed Libya for four decades.