After three months, it’s becoming more difficult to call what’s happening in Nicaragua a series of civil disputes, of demonstrations. The developments over the weekend are emblematic of something much worse. Not only is Nicaragua a failed state – undone by mismanagement, corruption and oppression – but the country has become a war zone under President Danny Ortega’s administration, and this weekend battlefield has grown to include National Autonomous University of Nicaragua.
“Starting Friday afternoon, a new crisis emerged. Pro-government militias set out to crush the student rebellion at the university, one of the last strongholds of open resistance in the capital. During a 15-hour siege, some 200 university students and others were pinned down by gunfire inside this small Catholic church compound. Two students were killed and at least 10 were injured before top Catholic clergy were able to negotiate their release on Saturday morning and escort the surviving students across police lines.
Ortega’s government has ultimately wrested back control of this campus — as well as other rebellious cities across Nicaragua — but the cost to his government could be steep. There is a growing international condemnation of Ortega’s heavy-handed tactics to break the protests. Business leaders and other former allies have called for early elections or for him to step down.”
This article originally appeared in the Washington Post