United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken this Monday denounced Persecution against Catholic priests by the government of Daniel Ortega In its annual report on religious freedom in Nicaragua.
“Human rights defenders have warned against attacks against the Catholic Church by the Ortega regime in Nicaragua,” the head of US diplomacy said in his appearance before the press.
Injustice against Rolando Alvarez
According to figures from Nicaraguan activist Martha Patricia Molina, more than 160 attacks have been registered against church members in the country.
Among them, the Minister of Foreign Affairs cited the case of “unwarranted detention” of Bishop Rolando José Álvarez Lagos, who was sentenced to 26 years in prison after the Ortega government refused to be deported to US territory.
“In many parts of the world, governments continue to persecute religious minorities using torture or so-called re-education camps,” Blinken said in the presentation of the report.
Secretary of State points to “genocide and crimes against humanity” by Muslim Uighurs for another year Xinjiang by the Chinese authorities,
He also referred to the persecution of the Iranian population in response to protests over the death of Mahsa Amini, who died last year after being arrested for defacing the veil.
He also criticized the “repression of religious minorities by the Burmese military regime”, which has been accused of genocide by Washington for attacks on the Rohingya Muslim community.
In the same appearance, the State Department’s ambassador for religious freedom, General Rashad Hussain, denounced that Russia “continues to attack religious communities inside and outside its borders.”
In addition, the report also mentions Afghanistan where people “must hide their religious identity or flee for their lives,” he explained.
Hussein welcomed “recent steps” taken by Saudi Arabia with regard to “religious tolerance”, but stressed that public practice of any religion other than Islam remains “illegal” in the country.
Similarly, Blinken claimed progress made in 2022 and cited the case of Belgium, which “formally recognized Buddhist minority status”, giving Buddhist religious organizations the right to teach their faith in public schools. and, if any, to apply for federal funding to do so.
He also commended the efforts of Brazil, whose legislators established guarantees of religious freedom for indigenous and Afro-Brazilian communities at the municipal and state levels.
“America Will continue to work to protect and promote religious liberty here at home», said Anthony Blinken, acknowledging that work remains to be done in this regard even in his country.