Violeta Barrios de Chamorro

(b. 1939)

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Daniel Ortega (Saavedra) (b. 1945) Nicaraguan statesman, President 1985–90 and since 2007


Somoza (1933—1979)



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(b. 18 Oct. 1929).

President of Nicaragua 1990–7 Daughter of a wealthy landowner, she married the editor of the liberal daily newspaper La Prensa. After the assassination of her husband (presumably on the orders of Anastasio Somoza Dabayle), she took over the editorship and became a leading opponent of the dictatorship. After Somoza's fall she joined the Sandinista junta, but left in April 1980 to become the leading critic of the Sandinistas through her newspaper, which provided some freedom of opinion during the Sandinista government. Heading a diffuse coalition of fourteen parties, she was the surprise winner of the 1990 elections against President Ortega. She managed to maintain a careful balance between appeasing both the Contra rebels and Ortega's Sandinista movement which still controlled the bureaucracy and the army. From 1993 she was forced to govern with a Sandinista parliamentary majority, and in 1995 she eventually agreed to a constitutional reform as demanded by parliament.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).

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