Mesoamérica, October 15th, 2018 – The Mesoamerican Initiative of Women Human Rights Defenders (IM-Defensoras) joins the international community in condemning the arbitrary detention with excessive use of force on protesters that were about to participate in a demonstration this past Sunday, October 14th, in Managua. The detention took place during a demonstration to demand the release of political prisoners, which are reaching about 400 people already.

This repressive act is part of systematic human rights violations by the Nicaraguan Government, including the criminalization of the right to protest, of freedom of expression and of the right to defend rights. We would like to highlight the fact that the right to protest is universally recognized, and is also recognized in the Nicaraguan Constitution, and that no ad hoc national normative can be used to justify and exercise repression.

The preliminary list of people arbitrarily detained is the following: Alba Aragón Dávila , Alejandra Machado, Alejandro de Jesús Cordero Ocón, Allan Cordero Ocón, Ana Lucía Alvarez, Ana Lucía Álvarez Vigil , Ana Margarita Vigil, Andrés Reyes Monge, Ángel Miranda, Arlin Elías Martínez Luna, Douglas David Díaz Obando, Elián Stiven Martínez González, Francisco Ortega, Freddy Ramírez, Geisel Solís, Gustavo Adolfo Vargas, Gustavo Argüello, Irving Dávila García, José Alejandro Vega Potoy, José Antonio Peraza, José Dolores Blandino Arana, Juan Omar Escorcia, Keneth Joel Saballos, Leo Manuel Navarrete Lumbi, Manuel Salvador Martínez, Marcela Martínez, María de los Ángeles Gutiérrez, María Dolores Monge Aguilar, Marlen Chow, Marvin Reyes, Mauricio Ríos, Maynor Josué Quintero Peña, Nena Gisela Morales, Orlando Antonio Luna Guevara, Orlando Rafael Miranda Ángel, Ramiro Lacayo , Roger Nicolás Cano Lara, Rolando Ernesto Tapia, Salvador Berrios, Sandra Cuadra, Silvia Castillo, Sofía Gabriela Velázquez, Suyen Barahona y Tamara Dávila.

Among the people detained, there are diverse women human rights defenders with whom the IMDefensoras has close contact.

We would also like to denounce that the women human rights defender Haydée Castillo, was arbitrarily detained at the Augusto Sandino Airport, when she was about to depart to fulfill human rights defense commitments. Haydée is a defender who has faced multiple human rights violations since the beginning of the Nicaraguan crisis, as we have documented in numerous alerts that as IM-Defensoras we have issued in the past few months. She is also detained in the prison of El Chipote.

As IM-Defensoras we demand that the Nicaraguan Government provide information the situation of people detained, to ensure their physical and emotional integrity, and their immediate release.

Although the National Nicaraguan Police issued a Press Note announcing the release of 8 detainees, we demand that are people arbitrarily detained since April 18th, be freed immediately.

As IM-Defensoras we reiterate our demand to the Nicaraguan Government to immediately stop all forms of violence and repression against people peacefully protesting in Nicaragua, respecting their human rights, including their rights to protest and to defend human rights.

We invite the international community, governments, civil society organizations and social movements, to put pressure on the Nicaraguan Government to stop the violence and repression of the protesters, to free all political prisoners and to express their solidarity with the people of Nicaragua, in favor of a peaceful resolution to the current political and human rights crisis.

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