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Cablegate: Embassy Managua

VZCZCXRO0812
PP RUEHLMC
DE RUEHMU #0836 2371843
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 251843Z AUG 09
FM AMEMBASSY MANAGUA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4485
INFO RHEHNSC/NSC WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEHLMC/MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORP WASHDC PRIORITY
RUMIAAA/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL PRIORITY
RUEHZA/WHA CENTRAL AMERICAN COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS MANAGUA 000836

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

DEPT FOR WHA/CEN AND DRL
STATE PASS TO USAID

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PHUM KDEM NU
SUBJ: FSLN YOUTH GROUPS COUNTER "OPPOSITION" YOUTH PROTESTS

REF: Managua 794
1. (SBU) On the morning of August 17, Managua and other cities in
Nicaragua awoke to find that, during the night, activists had
demonstrated against the Ortega government. The acts of protest
included hanging banners, burning tires, and hanging of straw
dummies dressed in Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN)
clothing. The youth groups, self-identified as "Sandinistas that
think differently," protested issues ranging from the repression of
freedom of expression to budgetary cuts in health and education.
They acted at night, they said, to avoid confrontation with FSLN
supporters.

2. (SBU) In response, the FSLN sent its people to the streets. The
FSLN-aligned news website "El 19" reported that FSLN youth would
occupy Managua's rotundas and intersections throughout the night and
into the early morning to "celebrate" the 30th anniversary of the
FSLN Revolution. However, as the week progressed, the FSLN youth
became more militant, and by August 21 they were dressed in
camouflage, armed with sticks and machetes, and had gathered mounds
of rocks to use as "artillery."

3. (SBU) Local media reported that the FSLN youth gathered each
night at midnight in the party's youth secretariat's building with
the objective of "neutralizing" any signs of protest against the
government. As in the past, the government's supporters fired
homemade mortar rockets in order to intimidate those who might
protest against the government. FSLN members of Managua's city
council assisted the government's supporters in patrolling the
streets and taking down banners that criticized the Ortega
government. [Note: We have noticed new pro-Ortega graffiti
throughout Managua. End Note]

4. (SBU) In a separate, but related incident, on the evening of
August 22, FSLN youth in Leon attacked Sandinista Renovation
Movement (MRS) youth. The MRS members had gathered in Leon for the
party's training of future leaders. According to news reports, the
MRS members were at a local shop for dinner when two pick-up trucks
with FSLN flags arrived. The militants from the vehicles, dressed
in camouflage and carrying mortars, attacked the MRS youth. The MRS
stated it would work with the Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights
(CENIDH) to file charges.

5. (SBU) Comment: The response to the dissident youth movement,
like the earlier disruption of the march by the "Coordinadora Civil"
civil society group (reftel), underscores the FSLN's absolute
insistence that the streets belong to them alone.
CALLAHAN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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