“The worst massacre in peace times”. This is how Nicaragua’s opposition Alianza Cívica por la Justicia y la Democracia (comprising students, civil- society groups, and the private sector) has described the continued crackdown by President Daniel Ortega on anti-government protesters which began mid-April and has claimed over 127 lives. The Alianza Cívica’s remarks were prompted by a particularly deadly episode of state repression which led Nicaragua’s Catholic Episcopal Conference (CEN), the mediator in the national dialogue between the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN) government and Alianza Cívica, to suspend talks altogether. With no end in sight to the unrest; calls mounting for early elections; and several well-respected institutions publicly calling for civil rebellion, the Ortega government remains intransigent, fanning concerns that the violence is set to continue.

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