Ortega to U.N.: U.S. Creating 2nd Vietnam : U.S. Creating 2nd Vietnam, Ortega Says

Associated Press

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega told the U.N. Security Council today that President Reagan should realize "he is promoting another Vietnam in Central America" by supporting anti-Sandinista rebels.

In his speech to the 15-member council, Ortega asked the United States to abide by a World Court decision that U.S. support for the rebels, known as contras, is illegal.

"When any state rejects or ignores international law it strengthens the dangerous tendency to replace law by the law of the jungle," Ortega said.

"We do not want confrontation," he said. "We have not come to the council to cast insults against the U.S. government, but to seek peace and respect for international law."

Support for Decision Asked

Ortega asked the council to support the World Court decision.

The Nicaraguan leader said the council session was "an opportunity for the United States to reconsider its policy and bring its conduct in line with the principles and norms of international law."

The World Court ruled June 27 that the United States should cease its support for the contras and pay reparations to Nicaragua.

The United States rejected the court's decision, saying the world body had no jurisdiction in the Central American conflict.

The court decision came soon after the House voted to approve $100 million in support for the rebels, who operate mostly from bases in Honduras.

Will Defend Rights

Ortega told the council that Nicaragua will continue to defend its right to self-determination despite U.S. threats, blockades and other actions.

But he said it is not too late to find a peaceful solution to the differences between the two countries.

Vernon Walters, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, left the council during Ortega's speech but said he was not walking out on Ortega.

As he left, Walters said Ortega "found the freedom to denounce the government of the United States and I don't think he would find that freedom in his own country."

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