Nicaragua: Detention of Two University Leaders Denounced

Adela Espinoza (left) and Gabriela Morares (right), the two young women arrested on August 19, 2023. | Photo: Courtesy

Adela Espinoza Tercero, from the confiscated Central American University, and Gabriela Morales, from the confiscated Juan Pablo II University, are the detainees

By Confidencial

HAVANA TIMES – Student leader Adela Espinoza Tercero, from the confiscated Central American University (UCA), and Gabriela Morales, from the confiscated Juan Pablo II University, were detained this Saturday by the Ortega-Murillo regime police, denounced university movements.

Espinoza Tercero, a Social Communication graduate, was “kidnapped by the Ortega Police from her home” in the El Recreo neighborhood, in Managua, indicated the UCA Student Defense Movement on its social networks.

The Nicaraguan University Alliance also denounced the arrest of the student leader and warned that she “is the mother of two minors.”

“The (Ortega) regime continues to kidnap innocent young people,” noted the Alliance.

According to Irvin Larios, a released political prisoner who was denationalized and expelled to the United States, the young woman has been a student leader since 2018, when protests against the regime of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo broke out.

Meanwhile, the April 19th University Movement denounced the arrest of Morales, but did not provide further details about what happened.

They demand their release

For its part, the Alliance of Nicaraguan Youth and Students demanded the release of both university students, whose detention it described as “arbitrary” by the Police, which has not yet referred to their arrests.

Regarding Adela Espinoza, the April 19th Student Movement added that she “is the mother of two minor children and has been taken from her family,” for which they in turn demanded her immediate release and respect for her physical integrity.

According to the Nicaraguan Association of Political Prisoners, “the Police, at the service of the dictatorship,” surrounded the young woman’s house and arrested her without a warrant.

Arrested after closure of the UCA

The detention of both students occurs just days after the closure of the prestigious Central American University (UCA).

The Nicaraguan regime published on Friday in the Official Gazette an order of the Ministry of the Interior cancelling the legal status of the UCA, granted on August 13, 1960.

This week a Managua court summarily ordered the transfer of all property, assets and bank accounts of the UCA to the State of Nicaragua, after the university was accused by the Public Prosecutor’s Office of being a “center of terrorism, organizing criminal groups.”

The UCA confirmed receiving the official letter on Wednesday and rejected the “unfounded accusations” of the authorities.

After receiving the confiscation order, the Jesuit university, whose rector was the priest Rolando Enrique Alvarado Lopez, suspended its academic and administrative activities.

Last week the authorities froze the bank accounts and immobilized the properties of the UCA, while on Monday August 14th a body attached to the Supreme Court revoked the accreditation of the University’s Mediation Center, measures that have been carried out in the midst of the onslaught of the regime against the Nicaraguan Catholic Church.

With information from Efe.

Read more from Nicaragua here on Havana Times