Critics of the regime of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo reject the constant repression against the Catholic Church in Nicaragua, which has intensified since 2022 and has left at least 10 religious in prison.
The new ones prosecuted by the Ortega dictatorship are the priests Ramiro Tijerino, José Luis Díaz and Sadiel Eugarrios; the deacon Raul Antonio Vega; the seminarians Melkin Rye and Darvin Leiva; and the cameraman Sergio Cardenassentenced to 10 years in prison, 800 days fine, plus the Lifetime disqualification from holding public officefor the alleged crime of conspiracy and false news.
After knowing the sentence against the group of religious who accompanied Monsignor for 16 days Rolando Alvarez in the Episcopal Curia of Matagalpa, criticism and rejection have not been long in coming.
The former president of Costa Rica, Laura Chinchilla, described as “obsessive and insane” the persecution of the Ortega regime against the Catholic Church, “taking or sentencing even the altar boys close to Monsignor Álvarez to prison.”
For his part, the former ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS) Arturo McFields pointed out that the Nicaraguan dictatorship with “infernal fury, without God and without law, sentenced 4 priests, 2 seminarians and a cameraman, all close to the town’s bishop Monsignor Rolando (Álvarez)».
The opposition Civic Alliance for Justice and Democracy also spoke about it and stated that “we cannot be well while they -religious and secular- are suffering this injustice.”
“We continue to pray for his freedom. If God is for us, who can be against us? Freedom because they are innocent!” added the opposition group, of which some of its members are political prisoners of Ortega.
The wave of repression against the Catholic Church has left 12 priests in jail, most of them accused of alleged treason or propagation of false news or accused of common crimes; other priests were forced to leave the country so as not to be subjected to arbitrary detention.
Another of the victims of the Nicaraguan dictatorship is the Bishop of Matagalpa, Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, who will be brought to trial on February 15, before the Ortega judge of the Second District Trial Court of Managua Nadia Tardencillathe same court that also sentenced the group of religious and a lay person who accompanied him.