One person was reportedly killed and several were wounded during violent clashes between demonstrators and security forces in Managua on September 23. Demonstrators demanded the release of political prisoners detained by the government over the course of recent months. Official sources claim that the individual who died was allegedly caught in the crossfire, placing the blame on the demonstrators for starting the violence. However, reports citing local witnesses claim that paramilitary forces loyal to the government violently engaged opposing demonstrators.
Nicaragua continues to experience periodical unrest across urban areas. While protests were initially triggered in April following opposition to President Daniel Ortega’s controversial pension system reform, these have since developed to wider opposition toward the government. Increasingly isolated on both domestic and international scenes, President Ortega is seemingly resorting to loyal security forces and armed citizen militias to subvert due political process, reportedly resulting in at least 300 casualties. With this in mind, further acts of violence and unrest will most likely continue to take place over coming weeks, especially given Ortega’s refusal to negotiate with the opposition.