Nicaraguan Police Allegedly Took Over Towns Before Elections

Nicaraguan police allegedly took over five municipalities in the country four months before elections, raiding city halls and taking over the offices of mayors elected under an opposition party.

President of opposition party Citizens for Freedom (CxL), Kitty Monterrey, confirmed the seizure of the mayoral posts in San Sebastian de Yali, El Cua, Murra, and El Almendro. Pantasma mayor Oscar Gadea Tinoco also said the police took over the municipality on Saturday.

Local news outlet IP Nicaragua reported that the police used force in seizing the city halls and assaulted five people since July 2.

Monterrey condemned the action and demanded respect for the elected mayors.

“I strongly condemn the arbitrary seizure by the regime of the mayors of San Sebastián de Yalí, El Cuá, El Almendro, elected by popular vote, at the same time, I demand respect for the physical integrity of their officials and mayors,” Monterrey said.

In 2017, CxL won five mayorships out of 153. In 2021, the administration of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega canceled the CxL party, preventing it from participating in the 2021 presidential election.

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