(From The Guardian)
Protest leaders have stepped up their campaign to force Nicaragua’s embattled president, Daniel Ortega, from office and halt a wave of deadly repression with a 24-hour nationwide strike designed to tighten the economic screws on the one-time revolutionary hero.
Student leader Valeska Valle said the stoppage – which began at midnight on Wednesday and is being led by a “civil alliance” of Ortega critics including students, religious leaders and business people – was intended to hasten “the peaceful exit” of the president and his unpopular wife and vice-president, Rosario Murillo.
“This strike is about our future and we know the people will support it,” said Valle, 22, who has emerged as one of Nicaragua’s most prominent student leaders since anti-government protests erupted on 18 April.
“We know the national strike will not be decisive in overthrowing this regime,” Valle added. “But it is a way of applying pressure” to end the “massacre” she accused Ortega’s “oppressive” government of perpetrating on protesters.