Daniel Ortega accused Washington Friday of using the military buildup in the Persian Gulf to win permanent dominance in the Middle East, and he likened it to the invasions of Grenada and Panama.
The former Nicaraguan president criticized the United States for backing U.N. resolutions in support of occupied Kuwait, while doing little to enforce resolutions calling for Israel to withdraw from occupied territories."How come for them human rights apply to some people but not the others?" asked Ortega, who arrived Wednesday on a four-day visit.
"There have been scores of (U.N.) resolutions on Israel's occupation of Palestinian land. These resolutions should be implemented, too, if there is to be a comprehensive settlement in the region."
The official Iraqi News Agency reported earlier that Ortega supported Saddam Hussein's proposal for a simultaneous settlement of his invasion of Kuwait and the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.
Washington has rejected that linkage.
The United States leads a multinational force of more than 350,000 troops arrayed against Iraq since its invasion of Kuwait on Aug. 2.
Speaking of the U.S. gulf deployment, Ortega said: "My country has suffered from the same policy when they tried to undermine the Sandinistas."
Washington supported the Contra rebels who fought Ortega's leftist Sandinista government throughout most of the 1980s. Ortega was defeated in February elections by a presidential candidate supported by the United States.
Referring to the U.S. invasion of Grenada in 1983 and the invasion of Panama i 1989, Ortega said: "The invasion of Grenada and the intervention in Panama are also other examples of the policy of hegemony."
On Friday, Ortega met with Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz and National Assembly Speaker Sadi Mehdi Saleh, the Iraqi News Agency reported. It said Saleh told Ortega that Iraq wants the gulf crisis resolved peacefully.
"But if the forces of evil attempt to ignite war, then Iraq will be forced to fight back," the agency quoted Saleh as saying.
The agency said that during his two separate meetings with Saleh and Aziz, Ortega expressed support of Iraq in its drive to "liberate the region from American hegemony."
Ortega met on Thursday with Saddam. Baghdad television said they discussed Third World countries that are "trying to combat U.S. hegemony."