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Ortega Vows to Abide '100%' by Peace Pact

November 11, 1987|Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega pledged today that his government will comply "100%" with the Central America peace agreement and renewed his call for a direct dialogue with the United States to settle differences.

Ortega's call for a direct dialogue with the United States was immediately rejected by the U.S. ambassador to the Organization of American States, Richard T. McCormack, who said after the speech that President Reagan has laid out strict conditions for reopening diplomatic contacts with Sandinista officials.

In a dramatic, one-hour appearance before the OAS General Assembly, Ortega also accused the Reagan Administration of violating the peace agreement by flying weapons and other supplies to the Contra rebels since the accord was signed Aug. 7.

"Nicaragua is ready to comply 100% with the agreement," Ortega told a packed gathering in the main meeting room at OAS headquarters.

Derides 'Sons of Reagan'

He also renewed his pledge to open a dialogue through intermediaries with the rebel leadership, deriding this group as "the sons of Reagan" who receive their salaries from the CIA.

Ortega said 140 CIA-sponsored flights had been sent on Contra resupply missions since Aug. 7.

Contra leader Adolfo Calero, who was present for the speech, said Ortega's forces must have inadequate radar because the actual number of flights exceeds that figure.

Calero assailed the speech as "lengthy, boring and without any real substance."

Ortega used much of his speech to criticize the United States by citing the June 19, 1986, finding of the International Court of Justice in the Netherlands, which called for an immediate end to U.S. backing for the Contras.

No Meetings Planned

On each point in the court decision, Ortega said, it sided with Nicaragua and against the U.S. position.

The Reagan Administration had no meetings planned with Ortega, a reflection of the U.S. position that no substantive talks with Nicaragua can take place until progress is made in pending cease-fire discussions between the Sandinista government and the Contra rebels.

Ortega last visited Washington in 1979, two months after the Sandinista revolution, and received a warm welcome from President Jimmy Carter. At the time, the United States was Nicaragua's largest aid donor.

Ortega was scheduled to meet later today with House Speaker Jim Wright (D-Tex.).

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