ADF appeals to the human rights commission to safeguard religious freedom in Mexico and Nicaragua

ADF appeals to the human rights commission to safeguard religious freedom in Mexico and Nicaragua

Alliance Defending Freedom International (ADF) asked that the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) safeguard religious freedom in the area, focusing particularly on Mexico and Nicaragua.

“Latin America is currently facing an increase in violations of religious freedom-related human rights. What we are witnessing is indicative of an alarming disregard for this fundamental human right, with grave consequences not only for religious people but also for the future of democracy in the region as a whole, according to Tomás Henriquez, director of advocacy for Latin America at ADF International.

Henriquez asked that the commission take real action against the breaches of religious freedom in Nicaragua, Mexico, and Argentina, among other nations in the area, at a hearing conducted on October 29 in Costa Rica.

Nicaraguan dictatorship’s persecution of the Church

The national police abducted Rolando lvarez, the bishop of Matagalpa, in the middle of the night on August 19, four days after forcibly confining him in his chancery. He has been moved to Managua and placed under house arrest there.

Along with the bishop, the police arrested priests, seminarians, and a videographer who were detained in the chancery the same evening. They are being kept in the prison El Chipote, where regime opponents have been tortured.

Father Ramiro Tijerino, Father José Luis Diaz, Father Sadiel Eugarrios, and Father Ral González serve as priests. Darvin Leyva and Melqun Sequeira are the seminarians, while Sergio Cárdenas is the videographer; all three are from the Diocese of Matagalpa.

Father Oscar Benavidez of the Diocese of Siuna was also apprehended and is currently being detained at El Chipote.

In March, the dictatorship evicted Archbishop Waldemar Stanislaw Sommertag, the apostolic nuncio in Nicaragua. The Vatican heard the judgment with “surprise and grief.”

The Ortega government evicted from Nicaragua in July the Missionaries of Charity, founded by Saint Teresa of Calcutta and now ministering in neighboring Costa Rica. The Religious of the Cross of the Sacred Heart of Jesus were required to depart the country in September.

Silvio Baez, the former auxiliary bishop of Managua, has been living in exile in the United States since it became apparent that Ortega’s regime likely ordered his murder.

In May, the administration removed the television channel of the Nicaraguan Bishops’ Conference from its broadcasting infrastructure, and in August, it forcibly shut down several Catholic radio stations.

According to Henriquez, the Nicaraguan dictatorship is carrying out “one of the harshest persecutions since the human rights system was established.”

In the Diocese of Esteli, the dictatorship of President Daniel Ortega and his wife, Vice President Rosario Murillo, is also responsible for the shutdown of social services and thirteen parochial schools.

Additionally, the administration was responsible for the closure and confiscation of the Agricultural Catholic University of the Dry Tropics.

Henriquez requested that the panel take “immediate action” against the persecution of the Catholic Church in the Central American nation.

Restrictions in Mexico

Henriquez also mentioned the abuses of religious freedom endured by the Catholic Church in Mexico, where it has been prohibited for clergy to discuss politics publicly for more than a century.

Cardinals Juan Sandoval and Carlos Aguiar and priests ngel Espinosa de los Monteros and Mario ngel Flores were found guilty of violating Article 130 of the Mexican Constitution, which affirms “the historical principle of separation between the State and the religions,” this year.

According to Henriquez, silencing religious leaders “not only violates religious freedom and freedom of speech, but is also discriminatory, as it affects a certain set of individuals due to their religion.”

The ADF expert stated that the committee must also address other challenges to religious freedom inherent in “the constitutions of Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, and Costa Rica”

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