World

10 dead, 20 wounded this month in conflicts over land between Nicaragua settlers, Indians

  • Relatives of Mario Leman, leader of the Miskito political party YATAMA, mourn during Leman's wake in the Caribbean coastal town Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Leman was killed during a recent clash between a group of Sandinistas and YATAMA members. The Miskito indigenous people say tensions began when they began expelling squatters who had occupied parts of their land. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)

    Relatives of Mario Leman, leader of the Miskito political party YATAMA, mourn during Leman's wake in the Caribbean coastal town Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Leman was killed during a recent clash between a group of Sandinistas and YATAMA members. The Miskito indigenous people say tensions began when they began expelling squatters who had occupied parts of their land. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)  (The Associated Press)

  • Relatives of Mario Leman, leader of the Miskito political party YATAMA, mourn during Leman's wake in the Caribbean coastal town Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Leman was killed during a recent clash between a group of Sandinistas and YATAMA members. The Miskito people claim that tensions began when they began expelling squatters who had occupied parts of their land. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)

    Relatives of Mario Leman, leader of the Miskito political party YATAMA, mourn during Leman's wake in the Caribbean coastal town Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Leman was killed during a recent clash between a group of Sandinistas and YATAMA members. The Miskito people claim that tensions began when they began expelling squatters who had occupied parts of their land. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)  (The Associated Press)

  • Rosman Flores, a member of the Miskito people Council of Elders, winces in pain as a doctor cleans a bullet wound he received a day earlier, in Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Flores says he was injured when shot at by Nicaraguan Army soldiers while he and two others were making food runs to surrounding Miskito communities. According to officials, Flores was shot by Nicaraguan Armed Forces for failure to stop at a checkpoint. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)

    Rosman Flores, a member of the Miskito people Council of Elders, winces in pain as a doctor cleans a bullet wound he received a day earlier, in Waspam, Nicaragua, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. Flores says he was injured when shot at by Nicaraguan Army soldiers while he and two others were making food runs to surrounding Miskito communities. According to officials, Flores was shot by Nicaraguan Armed Forces for failure to stop at a checkpoint. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)  (The Associated Press)

Land conflicts between settlers and Miskito Indians on Nicaragua's Atlantic coast have left at least nine people dead this month and 20 wounded.

Indians have armed themselves and are seeking to expel the settlers, who are drawn in part by the area's rich tropical hardwood forests.

The latest death was that of Yatama Indian community leader Mario Lemans. Hundreds of Indians gathered Thursday in the coast's main city, Puerto Cabezas, in preparation for his funeral.

President Daniel Ortega has blamed illegal land sales for the wave of settlers.

Police say Indians have burned some settlers' homes. The Indians say police stationed in the area have shot at them.