Crisis Severity The severity score from 1 to 5 is based on 31 indicators aggregated into 3 pillars (impact, conditions, and complexity)0 Very lowVery high 5
Impact This measures the impact of the crisis itself, in terms of the scope of its geographical, and human effects.2.90 Very lowVery high 5
Humanitarian Conditions This measures the conditions and status of the people affected, including info about the distribution of severity.0 Very lowVery high 5
Complexity This measures the complexity of the crisis, in terms of factors that affect its mitigation or resolution.2.10 Very lowVery high 5
Access Constraints This measures the level of humanitarian access constraints.2.0No constraintsExtreme constraints
Nicaragua: Dry spell in the north
Protests against the reform of the social security system that began in April 2018 were instantly met by violent repression from Nicaraguan authorities, prompting a period of large-scale civil unrest characterised by protests, demonstrations, and strikes. Reports of violence, arbitrary detentions, harassment tactics, intimidation campaigns, and incidents of torture against opposition protesters and human rights defenders have increased and are likely to continue, with no political resolution in sight. ? The crisis has led some 52,000 to flee to Costa Rica. ?
The political crisis has led to economic turmoil, with Nicaragua formally falling into recession on 1 October 2018 for the first time since the global financial crisis of 2009. Unemployment has spiked, with an estimated 417,000 people losing their jobs between April and November 2018. ?
According to the Nicaraguan Association for Human Rights (ANPDH), 561 people were killed and 4,578 injured in relation to the crisis since April 2018, an increase from the 325 killed and 2,000 injured previously reported between April and August 2018. ?
For more information on the humanitarian impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, please see the relevant paragraph below.
14/11/2019: PAHO reports that Nicaragua has some of the highest numbers of dengues cases in the Americas after Brazil and Mexico - 2019 has seen the highest rates of dengue cases in the Americas since recording. Since the start of the year, PAHO has registered for the country some 149,971 suspected cases, out of which 8,131 have been confirmed, including 26 deaths. The Government of Nicaragua issued an epidemiological alert for dengue on 30 July and has stepped up fumigation efforts to destroy mosquito breedings.?
Nicaragua has officially confirmed 16 cases of COVID-19 with five deaths. No confinement measures or lockdown have been imposed in the country, with NGOs and doctors casting doubts on official governmental figures. Classes have resumed following the Easter break, borders are open, and mass gatherings are not prohibited, with higher risk of exposure to infection for all citizens. Testing availability is severely limited, as is the capacity of the healthcare system, which is short on medical professionals. Very little information is available on the humanitarian response. Nicaragua shares land borders with Honduras and Costa Rica, both of which have active outbreaks with hundreds of cases.?
Protection: Large-scale civic unrest has persisted since the beginning of the crisis, and the government’s repressive strategies have intensified, raising serious protection concerns. As of January 2019, there were 767 people in prison for protesting against the government. ?
Food security and livelihoods: Located in Central America’s ‘Dry Corridor’, Nicaragua is experiencing high levels of food insecurity due to the lack of rainfall from June-August 2018 that caused significant damage to the 2018 primera season (harvested July to mid-August), with an average of 20% in agricultural losses recorded across the region. Increasing food prices resulting from economic recession also limit food access. ?
Information gaps and needs
- Current data on economic activity is missing because the Central Bank of Nicaragua (BNC) has not provided updates since June 2018, and the Nicaraguan government is still downplaying the economic crisis and contesting figures.