In Nicaragua, celebrations have taken place to mark the festival of Santo Domingo the patron saint of the country's capital, Managua.
GV & CU Procession led by band through Managua, Nicaragua. (2 SHOTS)
SV Procession through streets with man dressed as S. American Indian standing on car.
CU People, some with blackened faces, dancing.
CU & SV Santo Domingo images being carried (3 SHOTS)
TV, CU & LV People dancing. (4 SHOTS)
CU Man releasing firework rockets from hand.
CU & GV Supplicant on knees with people laying pads for him to crawl towards Santo Domingo Church.
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Background: In Nicaragua, celebrations have taken place to mark the festival of Santo Domingo the patron saint of the country's capital, Managua. For Managuans, it was a welcome change from the uphill battle to get Nicaragua back on its feet after the civil war which ended a year ago.
SYNOPSIS: Last August, political demonstrations occupied the streets of Managua, but not this year.
In July there were lavish celebrations to mark the victory of the Sandinist guerrillas over President Anastasio Somoza. On Sunday (10 August) it was a chance for 25-thousand people to give their thanks to Santo Domingo.
The procession through Managua combined the Roman Catholic origins of the festival with the paganism still practised by some Nicaraguans. Tradition dictates that if the faithful fail to give thanks once a year, the ghost of Santo Domingo will haunt the streets of the city.
Nicaragua's revolution was the first successful left-wing takeover in Latin America since Fidel Castro took power in Cuba in 1959. But, as in Cuba, communism has done nothing to change the religious faith of the country.
The civil war in Nicaragua cost 40-thousand lives in 52 days of fighting which ended 40 years of dictatorship by the Somoza family. Sunday's suffering was confined to religion, rather than politics.