Anniversary of the April Insurrection: we fight for a new Nicaragua

Apr 3, 2019 | Latin America

The insurrection of April 2018 began in response to the Social Security reform imposed by Ortega-Murillo, promoted by the International Monetary Fund. Once again, Daniel and Rosario showed their pro-imperialism in detriment of the Nicaraguan people, proving that they are the opposite of a left-wing government.

The protests quickly changed their slogans in response to the violent police repression; they demanded the resignation of Ortega and Murillo, justice for the victims and a profound democratization of the State. The Nicaraguan youth was the vanguard of the protests, with a special participation of the students who, faced with the bullets shot by the National Police, entrenched themselves in different universities and raised barricades with the people. The rural anti-canal movement that had been fighting against the policies of submission of the government party since 2013, raised barricades throughout the entire national territory. Last May, the resisting social sectors (workers, youth and rural people) had paralyzed 85% of the country. Since April, the crimes against humanity of the dictatorship has inflicted over 500 deaths according to the ANPDH. At least 780 people are political prisoners according to the numbers of the Committee for the Liberation of Political Prisoners, thousands have been injured, there is an undetermined number of forced disappearances and over 70 thousand exiled.

The dialogue of impunity and our rejection

There were two attempts at a national dialogue in this year of active resistance. The first, from May to June 2018. That time, though Ortega was against the wall and pressured by massive mobilizations, the result was nefarious: the dictatorship achieved breathing space and executed “Operation Cleaning” prepared by Ortega and Murillo. An operation of national scale carried out by the National Police and parallel groups led by the FSLN, that crushed the mobilization, the massive marches, barricades and the occupations in the universities and the cities with bullets and terror. Despite the closure of that negotiation, the relations between the business sector and the dictatorship continued. The big bosses that have governed with Ortega since 2007 have been the great obstacle in the people’s struggle against the murderous dictatorship. In February 2019 meetings between the big bosses and the dictatorship were made public, and the regime announced the reopening of the dialogue, but this time behind closed doors, with a business majority and the presence of the apostolic nuncio of the Vatican; a space opposed to the oppressed sectors. This time, the objective is to prepare a pre-arranged transition with the criminals of the regime, boycotting popular mobilization and delaying international pressures and sanctions. Private business, through the Civil Alliance for Justice and Democracy, and the Vatican want to wash the face of the regime through the signing of deals on wet paper, in which the dictatorship commits to respecting the rights established in the Nicaraguan Constitution; in order to try to avoid the mobilization of the people on the streets, which could end up with the overthrow of the regime and the interests of the powerful. Political prisoners have endured the worst part of the repression, since an infinite number of accounts of inhuman tortures have come out of the jails of the regime. But they resist and will not be silenced. They are organized in the prisons, actions that slip through the bars to remind us of their commitment, so we do not give in, so we do not negotiate over their liberties, nor over the blood of our murdered brothers and sisters. Such is the case of the eight political prisoners that went on huger strike from February 27 to March 13, 2019. The motive of this radical action was denouncing that they were being “used” as chips in the negotiations. The political prisoners, who have already given everything, had only their health left to make themselves heard, to demand their immediate liberation and denounce the new deal that’s being negotiated under our nose. They also denounced the nuncio, who asked the prisoners to abandon their strike because it “interrupted the negotiations”.

Resuming the mobilization and building a political alternative

There is no possible dialogue with the dictatorship and the business sectors to guarantee every liberty that the Nicaraguans demand, as well as the application of real and integral justice for the victims of State terrorism and the beginning of a new foundation of Nicaragua. We do not want a dialogue to save the regime and preserve its privileges. The freedom of our imprisoned brothers and sisters is not a bargaining chip, it is nonnegotiable. We will not achieve them through early elections to choose a new government that will manage poverty, misery and injustice in our country. A radical transformation of Nicaragua will be possible through the massive mobilization of the people on the streets with elections to a free, sovereign and democratic constituent assembly. A deliberative space where the people can debate everything on new social, political and economic bases; without pacts of the leaderships, with the empowered and mobilized people. We must urgently raise a program of rupture with the IMF; to establish real conditions and budget for wages, access to education and health, land for those who work it with an agrarian reform; the opening of the archives of the dictatorship; dismantling its repressive apparatus; implementing a judicial and political reform; with public officials with a revocable mandate and without privileges, where the judges and directive positions are chosen by the people; and separating the Church from the State. The people in general, and specially the principal victims of the crimes against humanity, like the political prisoners, murdered activists, their families, many of which are in the Committee for the Liberation of Political Prisoners and the Association of Mothers of April, deserve real justice, through four key pillars: memory, truth, integral reparation and the non-repetition of crimes against humanity and state terrorism. That is why the trial and punishment of Ortega, Murillo and the other criminals against humanity is essential. For this agenda, a constituent assembly and a solution separated from the capitalists, oppressors and the Vatican are essential. Our purpose must to fight for a government of the working people, farmers and the youth that gave everything for this revolution. For that, we must build an anti-capitalist, feminist and internationalist organization. In that sense, we call on young activist, the social movements in Nicaragua and in exile, to take these tasks in their hands. We, young Nicaraguans in the exile and militants of the Anticapitalist Network, raise this strategy for Nicaragua, the region and the world.

Elmer Rosales / Ariana McGuire
Nicaraguan students, Anticapitalist Network militants

1. Asociación Nicaragüense Pro Derechos Humanos.