After the assault on the Episcopal Curia and the arrest of Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, bishop of the Diocese of Matagalpa, the Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights (Cenidh) pointed out that it has been more than 30 hours without knowing about the religious.
The organization recalled that the Catholic hierarch is kidnapped in his parents’ house, in Managua, confirmation made by the Ortega Police, assuring that the prelate is “in home shelter”, which is assumed as an imposition of house by jail .
The Cenidh reported that there is no information about “the four priests, two seminarians and the cameraman who are imprisoned in El Chipote. “We demand that they be released, they are innocent,” said the human rights organization.
Given the lack of knowledge about the situation that the bishop, his priests and laity are going through, the Cenidh asked the Ortega regime “What is happening with Monsignor and the other priests who are in El Chipote?”
In reference to the possibility that Monsignor Álvarez be expelled from Nicaragua, human rights defenders called on Nicaraguans to “not let Monsignor Rolando Álvarez be exiled. He must return to his Diocese. All of Nicaragua needs him.”
Early on Friday, August 19, the Police broke into the Episcopal Curia of Matagalpa to forcefully remove priests, lay people, including Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, who had been besieged by riot police and paramilitaries since August 4.
“The people who remained in that Casa-Curia were transferred with respect and observation of their rights, to the city of Managua for the investigations of the Law,” says the statement, noting that the majority of the companions of Monsignor Álvarez are being held. in El Nuevo Chipote” and acknowledging that the policemen operated taking advantage of the darkness, violating the law, since they entered the premises at dawn.
The companions of the also apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Estelí, who would be kidnapped in the well-known torture center, are the first and second vicar of the cathedral of San Pedro, in Matagalpa, Jose Luis Diaz Y Sadiel Eugarrios, respectively; as well as the priests Ramiro Tijerino—rector of the John Paul II University—and Father Raul Gonzalez. Likewise, the seminarians Darvin Leyva and Melkin Sequeira will face the same situation, as will the cameraman Sergio Cárdenas.
The Catholic Church has been the target of attacks by the regime after mediating a failed national dialogue. Her prophetic voice and support for the people has led her to suffer threats, desecration of temples, persecution of her priests and bishops, and the forced exile of some members of the clergy. Álvarez is one of the religious who has not been silent, rather he continues to be in favor of Nicaraguans, victims of Ortega’s repression.