The Michigan Daily - Friday, February 21, 1986 -Page 5
6,500 political prisoners languish in Ni
MANAGUA, Nicaragua (AP) - A
leading official of an independent
uman rights agency estimates
icaragua is holding 6,500 men and
women as political prisoners out of an
overall prison population of 9,000.
"If the figures are reasonably
correct, and I think they are, then this
country has the most political
prisoners in Latin America," said
Lino Hernandez Trigueros, executive
secretary of the Permanent Human
Rights Commission of Nicaragua.
He said many of the political
prisoners are subjected to torture and
re forced to live in cramped,
darkened cells without adequate food
or medical care.
STILL OTHERS are held just for a
few hours of harsh questioning and
are beaten before being relased, he
added in an interview with The
The Permanent Human Rights
Commission was founded by
Nicaraguans in 1977 to investigate
1harges of human rights violations
under President Anastasio Somoza,
who was ousted in 1979 and replaced by
the leftist Sandinista government now
in office. The commission is funded
by private Nicaraguan donations.
The Sandinista government has
acknowledged holding people for
politicalreasons but Hernandez
Trigueros says it has refused to
discuss their numbers or the con-
ditions under which they are held. The
government denies human rights
HernandezTrigueros said his
estimate of 6,500 political prisoners
includes 2,500 former national guar-
dsmen of the Somoza regime, many
locked up since1979.
HUMAN RIGHTS abuses are stan-
dard in El Chipote, a state security
prison, Hernandez Trigueros said. It
is operated by the Interior Ministry
and is on a hill behind the Intercon-
tinental Hotel in downtown Managua.
"In El Chipote, people are put in
underground cells which are sealed,
with only a -small pipe in the ceiling
for air," Hernandez Trigueros said.
"The people do not have names, only
He said prisoners there often are
put in underground cells without win-
dows or lights. Some cells have a
glow-in-the-dark ring painted around
the floor hole used for a toilet, he ad-
Among abuses cited by Hernandez
Triguer cs at El Chipote and other
" Prisoners isolated and often
deprived of food and water for several
days, left to live in total darkness, or
alternately, in a cell where a light
" Prisoners, both men and women,
forced to do physical exercise in the
nude and subjected to taunts by their
captors. In cases of women priosners,
there have been reports of sexual
* Prisoners beaten during in-
terrogations. Some prisoners are put
in barrels of water and left in the open
for two to three days and nights.
" Prisoners given drugs before in-
terrogation so they cannot remember
afterward what they had said or what
was said to them.
Hernandez Trigueros said those
arrested for political reasons have lit-
tle chance of being released unless the
Sandinistas decide to free them. The
government holds prisoners without
charge or trail under terms of a
series of states of emergency decreed
since March 1982 because of the fight
against U.S.-supported rebels.
The Contras as well have been ac-
cused of committing human rights
violations in their operations against
Many of the Nicaraguan com-
mission's findings have been echoed
by other cources, including former
President Jimmy Carter who recently
visited Nicaragua and the London-
based Amnesty International human
CARTER, who met with two
political prisoners released by the
government, said afterward, "I am
not satisfied with what I found here.
But I hope that it's not too late to
repair the past and implant the goals
the Sandinistas had set in 1979."
Amnesty International in a report
Feb. 11 said, "Under the Sandinista
government, political prisoners may
be held incommunicado for periods of
up to several months, denied a fair
trial, and be subjected to poor prison
The report added, "Most of these
prisoners are released without
coming to trial, and prisoners of con-
science wrongfully convicted of
crimes have usually been pardoned
shortly afterward. These detentions
seemed to represent a pattern of in-
timidation and harrassment."
Amnesty International also said ac-
cused the Contras of human rights
violations. It said frequent reports
from deserters and witnesses told of
torture, mutilations, and executions
by the Contras. The number of vic-
tims, it said, "is believed to total
HERNANDEZ Trigueros said the
Sandinistas' political prisoners can
range from a housewife to an im-
poverished farmer but favorite targets
are opposition leaders, lawyers and
anyone the Sandinistas feel pose a
"The government wants the critics
to leave the country or at least silence
them," he said.
A written request by The Associated
Press for an interview with Interior
Minister Tomas Borge, who is the of-
ficial in overall charge of prisons, was
Hernandez Trigueros said his
organization and the Red Cross have
been denied permission to inspect the
"During the time of Somoza, there
were many serious problems, but now
it is more serious," Hernandez
Trigueros said. "Before, it was
possible to visit the prisons, but now
that is impossible by order of Borge."
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By ANNE CHAPPLE
Utility rates are unnecessarily rising and
contributing to tution hikes, according to a
state representative and thge director of the
Michigan Citizens Lobby.
State Representative Perry Bullard (D- Ann
Arbor) told an audience at the Union's pen-
dleton room that last night "students have a
substantial stake in energy costs decisions."
ECHOING BULLARD, Joe Tiuckinsky, exec-
utive director of Michigan Citizens Lobby
(MCL), said, "For students, increased utility
rates increase tuition - they increase
Tuckinsky said that because the University
has to pay exhorbitant cost in utilities it is for-
ced to pass the burden onto students.
Warning an audience of MCL members, but
no students, Tuckinsky said Detroit Edison and
Consumers Power are requesting rate in-
creases totaling nearly $1 billion. If the Public
Service Commission (PSC) approves the
requests, consumer bills could rise up to 40
BOTH speakers warned that such rate in-
creases could drive businesses out of the state
and discourage new ones from settling in
Tuckinsky charged that the proposed rate in-
creases are unnecessary and directly at-
tributable to utility companies poor planning
Both speakers agreed that the increases are
a result of the construction of the Bell River
and Fermi power plants. The $2 billion spent by
Detroit Edison to build the plants was un-
necessary because the electric power
generated by them will not be needed until the
1990s, Tuckinsky said.
Tuckinsky added that the power to be
generated by the $4 billion Fermi plant willnot
be needed until the next century, if then.
"The cost of these plants has far overrun
projected costs and the burden, of course, will
be passed on to the consumers," Tuckinsky
said. He condemned the waste, saying that if
old coal-powered plants had been updated and
modernized, the net cost to the consumer would
be about one fourth of that for the power to be
generated by the Fermi plant and one half that
for the power generated by the Bell River
3 's e co ..:Ca> '9z4" :. x~ z b sus.. y: ..... ......; ......
Court dismissed obstruction
(Continuedfrom Page 1) can't expect a jail term for something
Plunkett added that said he and The defendants said they would not
other officials are satisfied with the have been convicted had the case
agreement. "You've got to make sure gone to trial, and consider the
everybody is getting a fair deal. You, results a victory for students.
"THE CHARGES were dropj
because obviously the Universitya
the city didn't think they could fin
jury that could convict us," said L
senior Marion Milbaver. "The ar
was a waste of money and time.,,
LSA senior David Issacson ca]
ped yesteruay s comprounse a victory
and for students because it shows they
d a can't prosecute students for
SA protesting. Hopefully, they'll decide
est they have to listen to protestors in-
stead of trying to shut them up."
led OTHER defendants included LSA
seniors Mara Silverman and Jodie
McCann, LSA juniors Mark Cullitton,
SJoseph .Lieber, Graduate Student
Mark Weisbrot, and Ann Arbor
er- residents Jane Kirschman, Keith
ial Lyon, and Andrew Boyd.
inst CIA protestors
Many of them said the decision pleased with the decision becau
would encourage future campus shows what we did wa sright be
protests. "If they (the CIA), ever the crimes of the CIA are a vio
come back, they will know that the of international law and hu
University and the police will not be rights."
able to deny our right to protest," Yesterday's group of protester
Weisbrot said, the third to go before the court.
Leiber added that if the CIA does first group was acquitted ofc
return "they'll see some people derly conduct on January 23.
waiting for them because they don't second group's trial ended in a
seem to be changing theirpolicies jury on February 7. They
any." scheduled to be retried in Mar
Weisbrot said he was especially trespassing and disorderly condu
Crane talks on 'revolution of the righ
(Continued from Page 1)
"If my voting record had been
followed, we'd be running surpluses
WOW," Crane said. While he views the
deficits as a serious problem, he did
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120 S. State 662-4536
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Wed. 7:00 p.m. Communion in Chapel
Fri. 7:30 p.m. Dr. Strobe's Adult Class
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Dr. Paul Foelber, Interim Pastor
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not, accept a tax increase as a viable
solution because of the adverse affect
of high taxes on U.S. foreign trade.
Further, he said, "taxes (now) are at
almost record levels."
He also scorned Reagan's attempt
at tax reform. "The tax reform bill is
right now languishing in the Senate,"
he said. "With any luck, they'll never
get it out of the Senate."
CRANE predicted doom for the
Social Security system.
"Social Security," he said, "is out of
control and will get much worse until
someone comes up with a sane alt
native." He said that the Soc
Security system will no longer ex
by the time audience members rea
the age of eligibility.
In response to an audience quest
about the presidential chances
Congressman Jack Kemp (R-N.
who is a friend of Crane, he pointed
the obstacle of Vice President Geo
Bush. "George Bush has taken
Kemp's positions...that's Kem
problem," he said.
Reagan vows to aid
(Continued fromPage 1)
his people and threatens the peace
and freedom of the hemisphere."
Administration officials have said
repeatedly they have no plans to in-
vade Nicaragua, but they are making
a concentrated effort to gain
congressional support for $100 million
in aid for rebel groups trying to over-
throw the Sandinista regime in
Reagan flew to Grenada to honor
the 19 servicemen killed in three days
of fighting that forced Cuban troops
from the island and led to formation of
a democratically elected government.
HE LAID a green wreath with a
purple ribbon at the foot of a
memorial to the 19, then stepped back
and stood silent for a moment.
During a visit of barely five hours,
Reagan met with the island's gover-
nor, Paul Scoon, and with prime
ministers of nine English-speaking
democracies in the eastern Caribbean
before his speech t-island residents.
On Oct. 25, 1983, a 6,000-member
U.S. force invaded Grenada and
removed a military junta that had
seized power six days earlier.
Reagan described it as a rescue
mission for about 600 American
students at St. George's University
Medical School campus.
Air Force One landed at Point
Saline International Airport, scene of
some of the strongest resistance to the
invading U.S. Army Rangers and
Marines from Cuban soldiers and
construction workers armed with
automaic rifles. Twenty-four
Cubans were killed in the fighting.
Cigarettes aren't good
for your friends. Adopt a
friend who smokes and
help 'em quit today. You'll
both be glad tomorrow.
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