Students in Nicaragua have been holding anniversary celebrations in honour of the national hero, Cesar Augusto Sandino.
1. SV TILT DOWN TO GV EXTERIOR Church with crowd singing on steps. 0.10
2. SV Archbishop Bravo arrives for special mass; congregation sings. (3 SHOTS) 0.37
3. SV Archbishop gives homily; congregation applauds. (2 SHOTS) 1.13
4. GVs Rally and march, banners, chanting, school children in uniform. (3 SHOTS) 1.34
5. GVs Banner with Sandino's portrait; banner of May 1 brigade. (2 SHOTS) 1.54
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Background: MANAGUA, NICARAGUA
Students in Nicaragua have been holding anniversary celebrations in honour of the national hero, Cesar Augusto Sandino. As many as 20,000 members of the country's revolutionary student movement marked the occasion in Managua on May 19 and 20. Archbishop Bravo, a well-known critic of the present Sandinista regime, held a special mass in Managua on May 20. Sandino, born in 1893, gained national recognition in 1926, when he organised a guerrilla group to oppose US forces established since 1912 in Nicaragua. The US forces finally left in 1933, and they were replaced by the newly-formed national guard, commanded by General Anastasio Somoza Garcia. Sandino was assassinated the following year, reputedly on Somoza's orders, but some of his followers -- Sandinista -- remained active in opposing Somoza, who took power in a coup in 1936. The Somoza family continued to dominate Nicaraguan politics until 1979 when the Sandinist National Liberation Front, named after the former guerrilla leader, was formed to overthrow them. Up to 50,000 people are estimated to have died in the ensuing revolution, which led to the establishment of the present Government of National Reconstruction, led by the Sandinistas.
Anti-Sandinista rebels have since been operating against the regime from neighbouring Honduras. During the anniversary celebrations, the country's ruling junta called on all people to prepare for a prolonged war against rebels, allegedly financed by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The communique, transmitted on national radio networks, said that a 6,000-strong rebel force was invading Nicaragua's central provinces as a spearhead of the military intervention being prepared by the Reagan administration.
Source: REUTERS - MICHELE TAVERNA