Church leaders in Nicaragua appeal for unity, peace as crisis continues

Catholic News Agency | 6/10/2018 | Staff
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Managua, Nicaragua, Jun 11, 2018 / 05:01 pm (ACI Prensa).- As unrest centered on protests of president Daniel Ortega continues unabated in Nicaragua, bishops in the country are calling for unity and peace.

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights says that at least 127 people have been killed in the protests. Demonstrators have called for freedom of expression, an end to violent repression, and for Ortega to step down from office.

Bishop - Silvio - José - Báez - Ortega

Bishop Silvio José Báez Ortega, Auxiliary Bishop of Managua, called June 11 for a free Nicaragua “without tyrants, or victims, like a great house in which all of us live joyfully, without tears or blood, in liberty and social justice.”

Protests began April 18 after Ortega announced social security and pension reforms. The changes were soon abandoned in the face of widespread, vocal opposition, but protests only intensified after more than 40 protestors were killed by security forces initially.

Church - Nicaragua - Protestors - Complaints - Dialogue

The Church in Nicaragua was quick to acknowledge the protestors' complaints, and mediated a short-lived dialogue between the government and protestors.

Barricades and roadblocks are now found throughout the country, and clashes frequently turn lethal.

Bishop - Rolando - José - Álvarez - Lagos

Bishop Rolando José Álvarez Lagos of Matagalpa exhorted Nicaraguans during his June 10 homily to join “the immense majority” of the population which is asking for an urgent change in the country since “Nicaragua can no longer tolerate this.”

“The people of God must beware the lies that try to divide,” Bishop Álvarez said. “This is the hour for unity in Nicaragua.”

Fr - Vicente - Martínez - Bermúdez - Priest

Fr. Vicente Martínez Bermúdez, a priest of the Diocese of Matagalpa, has reported that over the weekend he was detained by a group of 20 hooded men and threatened with death. Another prirest of the Matagalpa diocese was wounded by shrapnel May 15 while trying to separate protestors and security forces, the AP reported.

In Jinotega, Bishop Carlos Enrique Herrera Gutierrez brought...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Catholic News Agency
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