Nicaragua’s Ortega rejects early elections, U.S. rebukes crackdown

Nicaragua’s Ortega rejects early elections, U.S. rebukes crackdown

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By Doina Chiacu WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega on Monday rejected the idea of calling a referendum on whether to hold an early election, while the United States said it was revoking visas of Nicaraguan officials connected to a crackdown on protesters. Ortega has faced growing international condemnation for heavy-handed deployment of police and armed pro-government civilians to squash the unrest, which led to nearly 300 deaths and many more people injured since protests began three months ago. In an interview with CNN en Español broadcast on Monday, Ortega rejected the idea of a referendum on holding early elections in a bid to calm opposition against him.