Costa Rican minister calls Nicaragua enemy

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Costa Rica's new foreign minister said Nicaragua will remain an "enemy" as long as it ignores an international court ruling in a territorial dispute.

Costa Rican Foreign Minister Enrique Castillo said the Nicaraguan government is being vengeful and xenophobic, La Nacion reported Tuesday.


"I think that we have to consider Nicaragua as an enemy while they continue to usurp territory," said Castillo.

Castillo said Nicaragua intentionally sparked the dispute last October when the Nicaraguan government initiated operations to dredge 21 miles on the south side of the San Juan River, known as the Isla Calero.

The minister said the dredging was planned by the Nicaraguan government when it cut down trees on Costa Rican territory during the Costa Rican presidential transition period.

"I think Nicaragua planned this in bad faith and with much anticipation," Castillo said.

The International Court of Justice ruled in March that Nicaragua must remove its troops from the disputed area.

Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla has also considered Nicaragua to be an enemy.

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