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Leon, a northern city that is a bastion of support for Nicaragua's ruling Sandinista party, wants President Daniel Ortega to put an end to repression and authoritarianism. It's a message many in the Central American nation want to get across after a week of violent protests that have been met by a robust police response at the cost of at least 27 lives.

We might be Sandinistas but we're not Danielistas," said Eliza Rodriguez, a worker in a shelter where protesters Sandinista yahoo dating in clashes in Leon were brought for medical attention. If he could hear them, the comments would be a slap in the face to the president, a year-old former Sandinista guerrilla who has ruled over his country for 22 of the past 39 years.

Protesters in the capital Managua have been calling for his ouster.

But for that desire to be echoed in Leon demonstrates the rift that has opened between him and communities that were once his base. When the protests started a week ago, initially over pension reforms, retirees in Leon also held their own march.

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