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Inter-American Commission on Human Rights condemns Nicaraguan repression of protestors

On Monday the IACHR criticised the Nicaraguan crack-down on protestors finding in a preliminary report that since April 18, at least 76 people have been killed, and 868 injured.

Protests initially began late last month in response to a new law that raised worker and employer social security contribution while cutting benefits. Yet, the latest wave of protests follows claims by the protestors that the government breached a two-day truce agreed during Church-Mediated peace talks. 

In their report they have gathered “documentary and audiovisual evidence, and heard hundreds of testimonies that reveal grave violations of human rights during a month of protests, characterised by the excessive use of force by state security forces and armed third-parties”. They note that this has “resulted in dozens of deaths and hundreds of people injured, illegal and arbitrary detentions, torture, cruel inhuman and degrading treatment, censure and attacks against the press, and other forms of intimidation”.

The report also stated that “there could have been extrajudicial executions” carried out by security forces.

The IACHR has urged the government to investigate and prosecute those involved in human rights abuses as well as adopting “measures to guarantee the free and full rights of freedom of expression, peaceful gathering and political participation”.

These protests have caused a crisis for President Daniel Ortega, who has spent 11 years in power. Nicaraguan officials are continuing talks with students and business leaders.

For more information see Reuters here and here and Channel News Asia here.