More than 20 former Ibero-American presidents ask Pope to intercede on repression in Nicaragua

More than 20 former Ibero-American presidents, among them Spain’s José María Aznar, have urged the Pope to offer “a firm stance in defense of the Nicaraguan people and their religious freedom” following the growing repression exercised by the government of Daniel Ortega on members of the clergy.

The former leaders grouped in the Democratic Initiative of Spain and the Americas (IDEA) see “with aggravated concern” that now “the primitive Ortega-Murillo dictatorship” has extended to the religious community the repression it had already been exercising on political dissidence.

“The purpose is obvious” and passes, according to a communiqué from the former leaders, to “destroy the cultural and spiritual roots of the Nicaraguan people in order to leave them in anomie and make them easy prey for domination.” They compare this persecution and the destruction of churches and images to the purges of Nazi Germany.

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The Nicaraguan Catholic Church has denounced in recent weeks the arrest of more than a dozen priests and bishops and among the organizations affected by the battery of illegalizations are the Missionaries of Charity, the NGO founded by Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

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