President Jair Bolsonaro called on clerics “persecuted” by the socialist regime in Nicaragua to take refuge in Brazil during his speech to the UN General Assembly on Tuesday.
Bolsonaro, as President of Brazil, following the tradition of the United Nations, was the first of the Heads of State and Government to address the General Assembly, condemned religious persecution in the world and quoted the case of Nicaragua.
“I want to announce that Brazil is opening its doors to welcome priests and nuns persecuted in Nicaragua,” Bolsonaro, who is a strong advocate of conservative values associated with Christianity, told the UN.
In 2022, the Catholic Church in Nicaragua suffered the imprisonment and detention of priests, the cancellation of eight radio stations and three Catholic channels, the forced entry and raid of a parish, and the expulsion of missionaries of the order of Mother Teresa of Calcutta.
The arrest of Bishop Rolando Alvarez, an ardent critic of the socialist dictatorship of Daniel Ortega, was one of the most resounding cases internationally. He has been in prison since August 19.
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The bishop of the diocese of Matagalpa and apostolic administrator of the diocese of Estelí, both located in northern Nicaragua, was taken away early on Friday August 19 by police officers from the provincial episcopal palace accompanied by four priests, two seminarians and a cameraman. .
The national police, led by Francisco Díaz, a brother-in-law of dictator Ortega, accuses the high hierarch of trying to “organize violent groups”, supposedly “with the aim of destabilizing the State of Nicaragua and attacking constitutional authorities”, although for the time being no evidence has been found.
Besides Nicaragua, Bolsonaro also criticized Venezuela and assured that “Venezuelan brothers (have been) forced to leave their country” due to the economic crisis in the socialist country.
He explained that around 350,000 Venezuelans have already been received in Brazil and assured that they continue to arrive.
“In recent months, about 600 Venezuelans, women and children, arrive daily in Brazil on foot, weighing an average of 33 pounds less than before,” he said.