Pope Francis expressed this Sunday his support for the Bishop of Matagalpa, Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, who was sentenced on February 11 to 26 years in prison for the dictatorship of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo.
“I cannot help but remember with concern the Bishop of Matagalpa, Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, whom I love very much, sentenced to 26 years in prison,” said the Pontiff, in his first words after holding an express summary trial ordered by Ortega due to the bishop’s refusal to be deported along with 222 other people detained for political reasons, who were exiled by the regime to the United States.
After showing his solidarity with Bishop Álvarez, the Pontiff once again reiterated to the Ortega regime to open up a dialogue process.
“Let us also ask the Lord, through the intercession of the Immaculate Virgin Mary, to open the hearts of political leaders and all citizens who sincerely seek peace, which is born of truth, justice, freedom and love and is achieved through through the patient practice of dialogue.
Francisco also had words for the Nicaraguan political prisoners released and exiled to the US, remembering “the people who have been deported.”
“The news coming from Nicaragua has caused me not a little pain,” the Pope emphasized on February 12.
The top leader of the Catholic Church assured to pray for the exiled opposition people and for all those who suffer from authoritarianism within Nicaragua.
“I pray for them and for all those who suffer in that beloved country,” Francis concluded.
The justice of Daniel Ortega sentenced this Friday, February 10, the bishop of the Diocese of Matagalpa, Monsignor Rolando José Álvarez Lagos, under a penalty of 26 years in prison. This after being transferred to the Jorge Navarro prison system known as “La Modelo”.
Monsignor Álvarez is the first Nicaraguan bishop imprisoned by the Sandinista dictatorship and accused of crimes of treason against the homeland, for allegedly violating Law 1055, Law of Sovereignty. This legal tool was approved to persecute opponents of the regime.