[Para espanol, ver abajo]
Social unrest sparked in Nicaragua on April 18 and continues to this day. With the ultimate goal of removing socialist President Daniel Ortega from office, demonstrations were set off by alterations to the social security system by the Ortega administration the week of the first protests. These changes by Ortega tapped into the growing discontent with the government, protesters and analysts said.
Thousands of demonstrators protesting against the government started in the capital, Managua, and has extended among other cities and into current day. These demonstrations began when students from the universities inspired protests by picketing, which now, tens of thousands of the country’s residents are partaking in.
According to statistics by Insight Crime, as of February, Nicaragua had retained its position as the safest country in Central America.
Insight Crime’s statistics say that in Nicaragua there was seven homicides per 100,000 residents as oppose to 10.2 in Panama, 12.1 in Costa Rica, 26.01 in Guatemala, 42.80 in Honduras, and 60 in El Salvador.
As a matter of fact, Managua had the lowest homicide rate of any city in the Americas at 5 per 100,000 inhabitants, by way of contrast of 14 in Ottawa, 18 in Washington and 116 in San Salvador.
This, unfortunately, is no longer the case. About 24 people were killed during the first week of demonstrations including civilians, protestors and police officers.
“The truth is that I don’t go out much because of the danger,” said Nicaragua resident Karla Rodríguez, 17, “but of the few times that I have managed to leave and go through the sectors where the confrontations have been ugly, there have been many burnt tires, cobblestones as barricades, and materials lying around which the students have used to defend themselves against the repression of the police.”
(El articulo es en español también)