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Nicaraguan resistance group claims responsibility for police killings near Costa Rican border

January 18, 2019

A Nicaraguan resistance group named “Los Atabales” has claimed responsibility for deadly attacks on Nicaraguan police officers near the border with Costa Rica.

Four Nicaraguan police officers were killed Thursday in the municipality of San Carlos, a town at the source of the San Juan River just 10 kilometers north of the border.

Posts on Twitter from members of Los Atabales suggested the group carried out a second attack on Nicaraguan police in Nicaraguan territory on Friday afternoon.

“At approximately 3 p.m. of today, January 18, 2019, there was an armed confrontation […] resulting in at least two police officers killed and three injured,” posted Hector Armando Morales, a purported member of the group, on Twitter.

The messages were then shared on a “Los Atabales” Facebook page. “Los Atabales” is a self-defined resistance group “with a single purpose to liberate Nicaragua.”

Nicaraguan authorities have not confirmed Friday’s events.

Following Thursday’s attacks, Nicaraguan authorities had blamed “Banda el Jobo,” a group they say has a base in Costa Rica. They alleged members of “Banda el Jobo” have illegally crossed the border back into Nicaragua prior to the confrontation.

The Costa Rican government refuted the report, and Nicaraguan police contacted by The Tico Times did not offer details explaining what evidence led them to conclude Thursday’s attack was committed by “Banda el Jobo.”

“Our ministry maintains a police presence in our northern border and in no moment have we detected that our territory is being used by a criminal group to attack neighboring countries,” said Allan Obando Flores, director of the Costa Rican border police. “We reaffirm our commitment to not allow any type of attack of that kind with bordering countries.”

This is a developing story. Stay tuned to The Tico Times for updates.


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