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(crédito: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP)

Pope Francis says he’s worried about the bishop’s arrest in Nicaragua

Published on 08/21/2022 09:58 / Updated on 08/21/2022 10:00

(Credit: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP)

Pope Francis expressed his “concern” on Sunday (21) over the growing tensions between the Nicaraguan government and the Catholic Church, two days after the Archbishop of Matagalpa, Rolando Alvarez, was arrested, a critic of President Daniel Ortega.

“I am following with concern and pain the situation that has arisen in Nicaragua, which includes people and institutions,” the Pope said after the Angels’ Prayer.

Francis expressed his “conviction and hope that through open and honest dialogue the foundations of peaceful and respectful coexistence can still be found.”

Rolando Alvarez, a critic of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, was arrested Friday and taken to his family’s home in Managua, where he remains deprived of liberty, in the latest episode of the standoff between the government and the Catholic Church.

Police said they took the decision to transfer Alvarez because he insisted on his “destabilizing and provocative” activities.

Alvarez, 55, has been in police custody in Matajalpa since August 4 as part of an investigation for “organizing violent groups” and inciting “hate” in order to “destabilize the state of Nicaragua”.

The bishop condemned the authorities’ closure of five Catholic radio stations and called on Daniel Ortega’s government to respect religious “freedom”.

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