"We are organizing small working groups, in which there are usually six members from the government and another six from the alliance, and in another working group three and three, with their respective advisers, and a coordinator who represents us bishops," Cardinal Brenes said, explaining the current configuration of the talks.
"The primary thing is to begin to learn how to speak and to have as a common goal the good of the country leading to its democratization. The people are calling for early elections and we as a bishops' conference have taken up that sentiment of the people and have presented the project, that route to take, to the president of the government. Everything is in his hands," he stated.
The Church in Nicaragua "is an institution the people trust," he said, "and that is a challenge for us, because it means we are answerable to that trust."
Cardinal Brenes emphasized the importance of well-formed youth, citing their role in standing up to Ortega's government.
"This entire situation we're going through broke out because of them, because it was from that social commitment which they have that they began the protests, which then spread throughout the country," he explained.
"We also have a great challenge: How to form young people so that come tomorrow, we don't fall back into the same errors of today. They are the ones who have in their hands the destiny of Nicaragua" and therefore it is important to ask ourselves "how to make a better Nicaragua."
Anti-government protesters have been attacked by "combined forces" made up of regular police, riot police, paramilitaries, and pro-government vigilantes.
The Nicaraguan government has suggested that protestors are killing their own supporters so as to destabilize Ortega's administration.
The pension reforms which triggered the unrest were modest, but protests quickly turned to Ortega's authoritarian bent.
Ortega has been president of Nicaragua since 2007, and oversaw the abolition of presidential term limits in 2014.
He has shown resistance to calls for elections, which are not scheduled until 2021, to be held early.
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Ortega was a leader in the Sandinista National Liberation Front, which had ousted the Somoza dictatorship in 1979 and fought US-backed right-wing counterrevolutionaries during the 1980s. Ortega was also leader of Nicaragua from 1979 to 1990.
This article was originally published by our sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.