Toll in Nicaragua protests reaches 127

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Managua, June 5 (IANS) The death toll in Nicaragua from protests against President Daniel Ortega’s rule has increased to 127, authorities said.

In addition to the deaths, some 1,000 people had been injured during the civil unrest which began on April 18, reports Efe news.

“According to our data, a total of 127 people have died in the course of protests and nearly a thousand have been injured,” the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) said in a statement on Monday.

The Nicaraguan authorities’ response to the protests has been “very disproportionate” and was aimed at creating an atmosphere of “intimidation and terror”, the statement added.

Last week, the Organisation of American States agreed with the IACHR and Nicaraguan government to create a commission to investigate the unrest.

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Over the weekend, in the city of Masaya, 28 km southeast of Managua, clashes between protesters and the police, supported by pro-government groups, left at least 10 dead, 62 wounded and 10 missing.

Ortega’s government, which has ruled for the past 11 years, blames opposition political groups for the “criminal violence” and denied reports of “riot squads or paramilitary groups linked to the government” who protesters blame for the deaths.

–IANS

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