Government Forces Try To Subdue Masaya, Six Dead

Nicaraguan police and pro-government paramilitaries moved to reassert control over the city of Masaya by force Tuesday. The city that had declared a breakaway government the day before, prompting clashes with protesters, resulting in the death of at least six people, according to human rights workers.

Nicaraguan police and pro-government paramilitaries moved to reassert control over the city of Masaya by force Tuesday after residents of the opposition bastion declared themselves in rebellion against President Daniel Ortega. / AFP PHOTO / INTI OCON

That brought the death toll in two months of nationwide violence to 186.

- payin the bills -

Bursts of gunfire resounded in three neighborhoods, including the main entrance to the city, where government forces have gained control, the head of the Nicaraguan Human Rights Association Alvaro Leiva said.

Masked gunmen in civilian clothes and riot police descended on the city of Masaya. Video from the scene showed protesters shielding themselves behind street barricades amid gunfire.

As night fell, people in Masaya set up barricades to protect against another government assault. Trucks carrying armed men rumbled through the streets.

- paying the bills -

Earlier, Leiva said residents were resisting “within the scope of their possibilities” but were under “disproportionate” attack by the security forces.

Masaya, about 24 kilometers south of the capital, Managua, was a bastion of support for Daniel Ortega and his Sandinista rebels, who overthrew the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza in 1979.

Anti-government demonstrators take cover behind a barricade, during clashes with riot police and members of the Sandinista youth, in Masaya some 35 km from Managua on June 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / INTI OCON

A onetime leftist guerrilla, Ortega led the country from 1979 to 1990 and then returned to the presidency in 2007. Ortega and his wife, Rosario Murillo, who was elected vice-president in 2016, have held near-total power for years.

For the past few weeks, Masaya has been controlled by protesters opposed to President Daniel Ortega, protest leaders say they don’t recognize the Ortega’s government, forming a five-member “junta of national salvation” to administer Masaya. City hall is abandoned.

On Tuesday, pro-government forces used tractors and tow trucks to clear barricades from the main road leading to Masaya.

- paying the bills --

The auxiliary bishop of Managua, Silvio Baez, appealed to the government to back off. “Stop the attack on Masaya. Respect the life of the population,” he tweeted.

On Monday, leaders of student protesters and civil society groups in Managua said they were ending negotiations, the National Dialogue sponsored by the Episcopal Conference of Nicaragua, with Ortega.

The dialogue resumed last Friday, the after the national strike that paralyzed the country. They had been suspended in May, when both sides had reached an impasse.

“Masaya is on strike, there is no presence of the central government, nor of the municipal government, and it’s logical that facing so much repression and death, the population does not feel represented,” said Alvaro Leiva, director of the Nicaraguan Association for the Defense of Human Rights.

Among the dead in Masaya on Monday is Marcelo Mayorga López, who was shot in the head and left in the middle of the street. “In a cart I took him (the body),” his wife, Auxiliadora Cardoze, told El Nuevo Diario.

“A policeman who was standing next to me laughed,” said Auxiliadora Cardoze. “Help me, help me get him out …” the woman shouted at the protesters, who could not help because of the presence of police. A video of her, screaming desperate to be allowed to recover the body of her husband, went viral on Tuesday.

In the end, said Cardoze, four policemen (two women and two men) helped her to lift the body onto a cart, but not the officer who laughed at her misfortune. When all this was happening, gun shots and mortar fire were being heard.

Related Articles

Remittances grow despite the coronavirus pandemic

“Everybody sends money to family members for their daily subsistence and...

4 killed, 48,000 evacuated as Hurricane Iota Tears Across Nicaragua

TODAY NICARAGUA - The damage from Hurricane Iota in Nicaragua is...

MOST READ

Rosario Murillo: La Heredera (The Heiress)

Rosarion Murillo, the "eternally loyal" to her husband and political partner, Daniel Ortega. In a profile by Confidencial in October 2016, before her election as...

Better Air Connectivity Between Nicaragua and the US

The private companies' association is in talks with United Airlines to promote the opening of a route that connects Nicaragua with the east coast...

Nicaragua Unveils Central America’s Largest Baseball Stadium

Nicaragua has unveiled its long-awaited baseball stadium in Managua, replacing the former baseball field built in 1948. The new structure will hold up to...

Bianca Jagger Gets Into The Nicaragua Act Again

(American Thinker)  Remember Bianca Jagger? You know, the disco queen and former rock-star's wife turned leftwing "human rights activist" who was last seen mourning...

What Are Some of Nicaragua’s Popular Food?

TODAY NICARAGUA - Nicaragua is an interesting place, with a tumultuous history and a relatively peaceful present. and even if many things can be...

Nicaragua Praised by the IMF

The IMF noted the positive evolution of all the country's economic indicators, and the drastic fall in poverty, with an increase of 33% in...

Poll Shows Declining Expectations on a Nicaraguan Canal

According to the results of the most recent survey conducted by Cid Gallup, the Nicaraguan interoceanic canal project, a concession given to the Chinese...

Let's Keep This Going!

To be updated with all the latest news and information about Nicaragua and Latin America.

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.