In Managua, Nicaragua, riot police take cover during clashes with university students protesting pension reform on April 20, 2018. At least nine journalists were injured while covering the demonstrations, according to reports. (Reuters/Oswaldo Rivas)

In Nicaragua, TV channels blocked, journalists injured while covering pension protests

April 20, 2018 5:29 PM ET

New York, April 20, 2018--At least nine journalists have been injured and at least five independent television channels have been blocked in Nicaragua, as escalating protests against pension reform since April 18 have left at least three people dead, according to news reports.

Independent news channels 15, 12, 14, 23, and 51, which were covering the protests, went off air after the government ordered cable television providers to cut their signals, reports stated. In a Facebook post, Channel 15 director Miguel Mora called the action a "clear violation of freedom of the press."

"We call on the Nicaraguan authorities to stop attacking independent media and allow journalists to cover the protests without threat or harassment," said CPJ Program Director Carlos Martinez de la Serna. "Nicaraguans deserve diverse news sources, and television stations should broadcast freely, with no interruption or government pressure."

Of the nine journalists injured while reporting on the protests, at least two had their equipment robbed, according to news reports.

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