It has come to light over the last week that sexual allegations against Oscar Arias are being exposed by mnay that had contact with the ex-president of Costa Rica.
Óscar Arias Sánchez, the 1987 Nobel Peace Prize winner and former president of Costa Rica, has been accused of sexual assault by three women. [Tico Times / Alejandro Zύñiga]
The first accuser, Dr. Alexandra Arce von Herold, 34, is a psychiatrist and nuclear activist who frequently met with 78-year-old Arias. Arce filed a report with federal prosecutors on Monday stating that Arias assaulted her in 2014. Arias denied the allegations. [NYT / Frances Robles]
Then a second woman, Emma Daly, told the Washington Post that Arias groped her in the 1990s when she was a reporter. In an email to the Post, one of Arias’s attorneys said his legal team was not able to comment on Daly’s allegation because it is part of an ongoing investigation. [Washington Post / Kevin Sieff]
A third accuser, Nono Antillón, said in an interview with La Nación on Tuesday that Arias sexually assaulted her when she was his adviser in the mid-1980s. None of the women accusing Arias spoke publicly immediately following the assaults, saying it was considered acceptable at the time for men to harass women and they wouldn’t have been believed. [Tico Times / Alejandro Zύñiga]
In Costa Rica, long-held gender norms have actually escalated violence against women. Only one politician has ever been forced out of office for a sexual harassment complaint. [NYT / Frances Robles]
“Politics today is a conspiracy of insinuations,” Arias wrote in an op-ed for La Nación last month, in response to separate accusations of criminal malfeasance against him for approving a mining project in 2008 before environmental studies were completed. [NYT / Frances Robles]