The first events during the 2018 protests in León occurred in the municipality and city of the same name (“the university city”), specifically in the Sutiaba neighborhood. León City is home to 184,041 of the department’s 44,308 inhabitants. Sutiaba is an indigenous community that has possessed a Royal Title since 1727, and its cultural-geographical identity has played a determinant role in the resistance to the regime.
April 18: Militants of the FSLN party and the Sandinista Youth attacked and beat elderly adults who were protesting against the INSS (social security) reforms. The aggression detonated disturbances that night and demonstrations later.
April 20: Police anti-riot forces and pro-government groups attacked independent protest marchers. Fires set at the Darío Radio Station and the CUUN [the UNAN University Center] left three of the perpetrators dead.
June 12: Protesters in León called for the country’s first national work stoppage. Sutiaba erected barricades on each of the neighborhood’s corners.
June 28-29: The government began its “Operation Clean-up,” carried out by police and paramilitaries in several areas of the city. Wilber Antonio Jarquín Rostrán, 26 years old, who was protecting barricades in Sutiaba, died after receiving at least eight bullet wounds.
July 5: Four young people were riddled with bullets by the regime’s forces: Danny Ezequiel López, 21 years old, Alex Enrique Machado Vásquez, 24 years old, Mario Martínez Peralta, 18 years old, and Junior Alexander Núñez Rojas, 21 years old. In addition, more than 20 were wounded and 60 were arrested.