Managua (Agenzia Fides) - On the occasion of the Bicentenary of the independence of Central America, which is celebrated today, September 15, 2021, the Bishops' Conference of Nicaragua (CEN) urged Nicaraguan society to meditate on the "historical circumstances of the present", and to pray that the nation has "wise and respected authorities" that "today it needs more than ever", that "know how to lead us along paths of civic friendship, tolerant and respectful dialogue, seeking the common good over personal or partisan interests and thus finding paths of justice and social peace".
As we read in the message of the Nicaraguan Bishops, sent to Fides, "Nicaragua needs to rekindle hope, have a new spirit that gives life to those dry bones, in the words of the prophet, that no longer serve the Community. Let us build a society based on values that, as brothers of the same homeland, lead us to live a spirit of brotherhood, freedom and peace. That is why we celebrate this Independence by committing ourselves to overcoming divisions and violent and selfish attitudes, this implies a true conversion of our way of thinking, which implies a conversion of the heart, that we see ourselves as brothers, so that together we can build a new society, motivated by charity and solidarity".
The tension between the government and the Catholic Church also continues during the civil celebrations of the Bicentennial across the country. A month ago the Archdiocese of Managua, through its Justice and Peace Commission, denounced the systematic violation of political and constitutional rights in the election campaign for the November vote (see Fides, 12/8/2021). Two days ago, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, denounced the growing attack on freedoms in Nicaragua, ahead of the on November 7 elections, with at least 36 arbitrary arrests, the invalidation of candidacies and the cancellation of political parties.
Nicaraguans, Bachelet stressed, have the right to run for president, to participate in the campaign and the media must follow the process, but "none of this is happening", he lamented in his updated report on the country before the Human Rights Council of the United Nations. The High Commissioner indicated that the 20 arrested in connection with the elections, which had already denounced in June, were joined by another 16, "among politicians, human rights defenders, businessmen, journalists and peasant leaders or students". (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 15/9/2021)