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  •  Supporters of the Sandinista government in Nicaragua.

    Supporters of the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. | Photo: EFE

Published 18 June 2019

“We are not going to allow those remnants of hatred that still exist to provoke anyone, because this isn't typical of Nicaraguans."

The Sandinista government of Nicaragua has established 2,000 ‘‘Reconciliation Commissions’ around the country in a fresh bid to bring peace to the Central American country, one year on after right-wing protests calling for the ouster of President Daniel Ortega.

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“Nicaraguan families want security, work, prosperity, peace and we are winning it, it is the truth, because the majority of Nicaraguans want to live in peace...and as we said, it can not be that a few clueless ones try to alter that good course,” Vice President Rosario Murillo said during a radion address announcing the commissions. 

The Reconciliation Commissions are forms of meetings around the country that attempt to bring about peace and understanding and justice for victims of the right-wing violence that swept the country a year ago, according to Sandinista lawmaker Carlos Emilio López. 

"The Commissions are sectors, channels, instruments of forgiveness, forgiveness without historical forgetting, forgiveness with justice, forgiveness with no repetition and with the purpose of achieving peace," López said last week also stated that the government hopes to establish up to 5,000 such commissions, so as to defuse political tensions and attend to those who suffered losses during the right-wing violence between April and July of 2018.

Vice President Murillo also hopes these measures will prevent a repeat of last years conflict, commenting on monday, “We are not going to allow those remnants of hatred that still exist to provoke anyone, because this isn't typical of Nicaraguans, these sentiments are foreign patterns and models that they want to impose on us.”

Protests, with the links to the U.S. government, broke out in 2018 against Nicaragua’s leftist government when protesters took to the streets against a proposed social security reform that sought to overcome the system’s financial crisis by increasing contributions by both employees and employers to avoid raising the retirement age.

President Ortega withdrew the reform and issued calls for dialogue to avoid a spiral of violence, but the protesters' demand had shifted towards getting Ortega to step down before his term ends in 2021.

Protests soon became violent as opposition demostrators established ‘tranques’, similar to the violent ‘Guarimba’ protests in Venezuela.

According to Nicaragua's Commission for Truth Peace and Justice, 270 people died and over 2,100 were injured during the protests.

Also, a number of attacks were carried out against police stations, government buildings and ruling party institutions killing 22 police officers as well as several local Sandinista activists.

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