Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said on Thursday that his ally, Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, successfully defeated a “terrorist and putschist” plot in a reference to the months-long crisis that has gripped Nicaragua. The number of persons killed by the Central American republic’s Sandinista regime vary from 350 to 400 victims. Human rights advocatees and opponents of the Sandinista regime says that hundreds of persons have been arrested and tortured. 

Maduro tweeted from Caracas “Despite imperalist aggression, the Nicaraguan government has defeated the terrorist and putschist plan. We will overcome!” This came one day after the Organization of American States passed a broadly supported resolution condemning the Ortega government. Maduro also congratulated the Ortega government as it celebrated the anniversary of the Sandinista revolution in the 1970s that brought an end to the pro-American government of Anastasio Somoza during the Jimmy Carter administration. 

The people of Nicaragua also marked three months of the bloody conflict with the current socialist government, which has left scores of dead, hundreds wounded, and an untold number of persons arrested and kept in prison. The whereabout and condition of many of the detained remains unknown to their family members. Witnesses in Masaya and Monimbo say that police, troops and armed civilian mobs known as “turbas” descended on neighborhoods there over the last few days and forcibly detained young people, some of who had not been otherwise involved in the conflict. Protesters are demanding that Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, to resign and allow snap elections.

Members of the pro-Sandinista mobs and military celebrated their victory in Masaya yesterday by raising the red and black flag of the Sandinista party. Armed turbas went to Masaya in pickup trucks and on motorcycles, engaging in combat with protesters armed with slingshots, homemade mortars and hunting rifles. So far, the last three months have been the bloodiest in Nicaragua since the 1980s when it overthrew the Somoza government. 

The U.S. government has repeatedly denounced the Sandinista government for his war against the Nicaraguan people. 
 

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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