Hundreds of Nicaraguans living in Costa Rica left today in a caravan in defense of human rights and freedoms in Nicaragua, which has been submerged since last April in a crisis that has left hundreds dead and detained as part of anti-government protests.
It was a peaceful caravan that left from the park of La Democracia, in downtown San José, and then moved to the north in La Cruz de Guanacaste to end with a march attended by several hundred people.
The Nicaraguan refugee in Costa Rica and political activist Josué Garay told Efe that the activity seeks to make visible the crisis in Nicaragua.
"We ask that this Christmas there be freedom for each of the political prisoners, we want to ask for justice for the people who live in Nicaragua, we are asking for justice, democracy, reparation of damages for families and we also demand the non-repetition of dictatorship," said Garay, who arrived in Costa Rica last October.
Garay explained that he requested international protection for threats to his life from people close to the government of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, and said he is processing his refuge.
The director of the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) for Central America and Mexico, Marcia Aguiluz, explained to Acan-Efe that the caravan is a "declaration that the people who are here living in Costa Rica want to return to their country to build a free Nicaragua. "
"This fight for human rights is fundamental, what Nicaragua faces at this moment is an absolute closure of democratic spaces, of dictatorship without any doubt, and the space that is given to them in Costa Rica is very important, especially these peaceful marches ", Aguiluz pointed out.
The organizers hope that the message of the caravan will reach the Nicaraguan authorities, that from Costa Rica they seek to defend their rights and be able to return to their country safely.
The caravan, in which a total of 17 buses participated, had the permits of the Traffic Police and the Ministry of National Security of Costa Rica.
Nicaragua is experiencing a social and political crisis that has generated protests against the government of President Daniel Ortega and a balance of between 325 and 545 deaths, according to local and foreign human rights organizations, while the Executive figure in 199 deaths.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights have held the Government responsible for "more than 300 deaths," as well as extrajudicial executions, torture and other abuses against demonstrators and opponents.
Ortega has denied the accusations and has assured that it is an attempt of "coup d'état".
The demonstrations against Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, began on April 18 due to failed social security reforms and became a requirement for the president to resign.