Barricades and roadblocks are now found throughout the country, and clashes frequently turn lethal. Bishops and priests across Nicaragua have worked to separate protesters and security forces, and have been threatened and shot.
The violence in Diriamba and Jinotepe was focused on police and paramilitaries trying to clear barricades set up and manned by protesters.
Bishop Rolando José Alvarez Lagos of Matagalpa said the government efforts to clear roadblocks were made "at the price of blood and death," and that the government has become blinded by "arrogance and pride".
Shortly after the bishops were assaulted in Diriamba, paramilitaries and government sympathizers were profaning and sacking St James the Apostle parish in Jinotepe.
The parish showed on Facebook that it had been desecrated by "persons, paramilitaries accompanied by police forces" who were "destroying pews, tables, and medications".
The medications had been used in part to provide medical care for those wounded in the July 8 riots in Diriamba.
The profaners threw garbage at the parish's priests, and threatened to burn the church.
The Nicaraguan bishops' conference has called off the working groups meant to mediate in the country's crisis, and protesters are planning a strike July 12.
Nicaragua's crisis began after Ortega announced social security and pension reforms. The changes were soon abandoned in the face of widespread, vocal opposition, but protests only intensified after more than 40 protestors were killed by security forces initially.
Anti-government protesters have been attacked by "combined forces" made up of regular police, riot police, paramilitaries, and pro-government vigilantes.
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The Nicaraguan government has suggested that protestors are killing their own supporters so as to destabilize Ortega's administration.
The Church in Nicaragua was quick to acknowledge the protestors' complaints.
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.
The Church has suggested that elections, which are not scheduled until 2021, be held in 2019, but Ortega ruled this out July 7.
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.