January 28, 2023

Monsignor Rolando Álvarez served a month under house arrest in Managu

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(CNN Spanish) — A month ago Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, bishop of the Diocese of Matagalpa, was forcibly removed from the episcopal see by the Nicaraguan Police and taken to Managua. And the Curia remembered the episode that occurred on August 19 in a publication on his Facebook page, while praying for him and for the people who were besieged in the episcopal see.

Before being transferred to the country’s capital, Álvarez had spent 16 days besieged in the episcopal see along with four other priests, two seminarians and a cameraman. They all served 30 days in detention under investigation at the Judicial Assistance Directorate, but no formal accusation has been filed against them so far.

The National Police reported in August that Álvarez and the priests were being criminally investigated for allegedly inciting hatred and violence with the purpose of destabilizing the Nicaraguan state.

According to the most recent report from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, a judge extended the detention of the bishop and seven other people for 90 days. Álvarez remains under house arrest at the home of his relatives in Managua.

The Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights (Cenidh) demanded this Monday through their social networks the immediate freedom of Álvarez, whom they said was kidnapped, and respect for his physical and psychological integrity

CNN has tried to find out details about Monsignor Rolando Alvarez’s condition through the secretariat of the Episcopal Conference of Nicaragua, but has not yet received a response.

In an interview with the Efe agency on September 15, Pope Francis referred to the situation of the Nicaraguan Catholic Church with the government of Daniel Ortega. “There is dialogue with Nicaragua and the Vatican has spoken with the government,” the pontiff said.

Shortly before, on August 21, during the Angelus prayer in Rome, Francis said that he was following with “concern and pain the situation created in Nicaragua that involves people and institutions,” and asked that through an open and sincere dialogue they establish the bases of a peaceful and respectful coexistence.

The Nicaraguan government has not reacted to these expressions of Pope Francis. CNN has tried to get comment but we await a response.

President Daniel Ortega has signaled to the bishops to support what he called an attempted coup in 2018.

Both the United Nations Organization and the European Parliament demanded in recent days the release of Monsignor Rolando Alvarez, his religious and all the detained opponents.



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