Officials in Nicoya say that they fielded 2,500 for Guanacaste march

Organizers said that 2,500 persons marched Thursday in Guanacaste  to reaffirm their Costa Rican roots.

They were responding to a remark made last week by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega that he might want to reclaim the province by seeking a decision from the World Court.

Guanacaste has been Costa Rican since 1824.

But the mayors of the 11 cantons of the province thought that they should ratify that fact.  During a morning meeting of the municipal council of Nicoya Thursday the mayors signed a manifesto that reaffirms the vote that took place 189 years ago. Also present was President Laura ChinchillaMany of the marchers were school children who were released from classes to participate.

Later Ms. Chinchilla spoke at the inauguration of classes at the  Universidad para la Paz at Ciudad Colón. She said she supported freedom of expression despite the bad press she has received lately.

Ortega’s government is involved in a World Court case with Costa Rica over the invasions of Nicaragua soldiers into the far northeast part of Costa Rica around the mouth of the Río San Juan.

Another controversy is looming as Ortega is making claim to maritime territory that generally has been considered Costa Rican. This is some 35,000 square kilometers in the Pacific Ocean. Costa Rican officials have never been anxious to negotiate with Managua, so this is another case that might end up in The Hague.

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