Home / General / Students take over Nicaragua university as protests against President Daniel Ortega turn ugly once again

Students take over Nicaragua university as protests against President Daniel Ortega turn ugly once again

Students have clashed with riot police after seizing a university amid protests against Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

Protesters took over the Engineering University in Managua, the capital, demanding greater democracy and Mr Ortega’s resignation.

Pro-government radio station Radio Ya, whose offices are located near the university, were partially set on fire during the demonstration.

A demonstrator fires a homemade mortar towards riot police during a protest against Nicaragua's government in Managua, Nicaragua
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An engineering student fires a homemade mortar towards riot police
Riot police stand against a wall after clashes with engineering university student protesters in Managua on May 28, 2018
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Riot police stand against a wall after clashes with engineering students
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega
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President Daniel Ortega has backed down on austerity reforms – but the protests continue

Protests also broke out in the city of Masaya where the prosecutors’ offices were set on fire.

Police were sent to contain the protests and there were reports of injuries.

Protests erupted on 18 April after Mr Ortega imposed austerity measures for Nicaragua’s social security system that raised income and payroll taxes while reducing pension benefits by 5%.

At least 76 people died amid a violent response from police and government-allied Sandinista youth groups, with demonstrations involving mostly elderly individuals, university students and other activists.

A riot police officer fires his shotgun towards two men during a protest against Nicaragua's President Daniel Ortega's government in Managua
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Scores of people have died in clashes since the protests began in April
A demonstrator fires a homemade mortar towards the riot police during a protest against Nicaragua's President Daniel Ortega's government in Managua
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Clashes like this one in Managua have taken place in cities across the country
A demonstrator poses for a photo with his homemade mortar in a protest against Nicaragua's President Daniel Ortega's government
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Human rights groups have concerns about how the protests are being suppressed

Authorities were seen using live ammunition on protestors while also arming pro-Sandinista groups with weapons.

After five days of unrest in cities across Nicaragua, Mr Ortega announced the cancellation of the reforms – but the protests have erupted again.

The International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) has expressed concern about serious human rights violations by the government in suppressing the protests.

Four people were killed during clashes on Saturday as thousands participated in protests by barricading roads and shouting anti-Ortega chants.

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