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Country plagued by increased anti-government protests

by Breonnah Colón - Editor- in- Chief
Wed, Oct 31st 2018 05:00 pm

Each country is home to its own distinct and fascinating culture, which cannot be imitated anywhere else, no matter how close borders lay. Regardless of similar or even identical terrain, natural resources or language, no two nations are the same in this world. This fascinating, but blatant fact pushes each of us to view each country, each culture as its own separate essence. 

In considering Nicaragua it is almost impossible to blur the country into the massive landscape that makes up the continent the small nation calls home. Despite its relatively small size and the historical and natural beauty that accompanies the nation, Nicaragua is more than a mere vacation pitstop, its a country full of controversy and conflict just as any other. 

Sitting almost directly in the middle of Central America, Nicaragua is bordered by Honduras on its Northern border and Costa Rica along its Southern border. Although the country houses more than 6 million people, the natural quirks making up its landscape is what makes this home unique. 

A few interesting anomalies are its Dual Volcanoes which, according to nationfacts.net is the world’s only volcano fed by two different flows of magma and the fact that the country’s location allows viewers to see 86 out of all 88 constellations known today. Nicaragua also holds three different regions known as the  Pacific Region, Central Region and the Caribbean Region, which allows for locals and tourists alike to experience completely different climates, explains visitnicaragua.us. In addition to these natural distinctions is the country’s social makeup. 

Nicaraguans are made up primarily by a mestizo background, meaning a mixture between white and native people, but there remains small populations of white, black and Amerindian groups across the nation. Going with this widespread culture are the languages spoken; spanish is the official language, however, native languages such as Miskito are also spoken in some areas, as noted by cia.gov.

Undoubtedly, Nicaragua has much to offer anyone. Locals are immersed in the country’s beauty and traditions each day and tourists are granted an opportunity to experience the country for the fascinating nation it is. On the contrary, there is more to Nicaragua than its glitz and glamor. Recently the country has made national headlines for its strong response to anti-government protests which took place this past weekend. 

The Washington Post explained these protests were only the latest out of a series, which have been taking place in the country for months. Nicaraguans have taken to the street to protest current President Daniel Ortega who has allegedly, “spent more than a decade dismantling Nicaragua’s democracy.” These allegations come after the president has implemented control by placing members of his own party or supporters in positions across different governmental ranks such as the judicial, congress and mayoral levels of office. This influence has allowed for a sway in bills and laws implemented across the country, much to the dismay of thousands of Nicaraguans. 

While the reason for the protests is shocking in and of itself, the situation has only gotten worse, with at least 317 casualties as of August, according to CNN. Both police officers and young children have made up part of the death toll, raising the stakes and adding to the outrage. Both protestors and the Nicaraguan government have only reacted stronger as time passed. 

BBC News explained around 30 protestors were arrested this past weekend and were only released after public criticism. While the protestors didn’t participate in any violent activity, the protests themselves were deemed illegal. BBC explained, “Anti-government protests were declared illegal by President Ortega [a month earlier on September 28].” 

For many Americans, this news is sad, but not necessarily impactful. While the plight faced by Nicaraguans may seem too distant to take seriously, American citizens have been impacted by this situation. According to ABC News, two American citizens were among the group of protestors arrested by the government. Although they were eventually released, the fact of their participation and potential punishment remains as a reminder that we truly are not as isolated as we’d like to think we are. 

Too often we only care to be involved in the ongoings of other countries only if there’s a drastic need for our participation or if the location serves as a popular vacation spot. Currently Nicaragua is meeting both those standards and we have every reason to be informed about the ongoings taking place in this nation. As great as we like to think we are, it can always serve as a benefit to be aware of what goes on in the other America.


stylus@brockport.edu | @b_co___ 

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