Managua, Nicaragua, Jun 20, 2018 / 13:00 pm America/Denver (CNA).
Peace talks mediated last week by the Catholic Church in Nicaragua, between the government of President Daniel Ortega and his opposition, proved to be short-lived as clashes have yet again devolved into violence.
On Friday, June 15, the bishops of Nicaragua, who have been key mediators in peace talks in the majority-Catholic country, reconvened a national dialogue to make known the response of Ortega to the proposals he was given in order to end the crisis.
But by Tuesday, June 19, at least 11 people had died in additional fighting, and the peace talks were yet again abandoned after Ortega’s administration failed to invite international organizations to investigate deaths and acts of violence as promised.
Unrest first broke out in the country in April after Ortega, who has been president since 2007, announced social security and pension reforms. The changes were soon abandoned in the face of widespread, vocal opposition, but protests intensified after more than 40 protesters were killed by security forces. Peace talks (which began May 16) had been suspended May 23 for lack of consensus.
Despite the signing of the ceasefire, a family of at least six died in an arson attack on their home and business in Managua June 16. Opposition groups have said a pro-government militia was responsible for the blaze, a charge the government has denied.