After a weekend of bloodshed that left at least 11 people dead, dozens of people injured and disappeared in Carazo, the religious delegation from Managua’s Catholic Church (headed by Cardinal Leopoldo Brenes, Apostolic Nuncio, Waldemar Stanislaw and Managua’s auxiliary bishop, Silvio Baez) traveled to the San Sebastian Basilica in Diriamba where they were attacked by pro-government mobs and paramilitary groups.
The delegation was accompanied by the Nicaraguan Pro Human Rights Association (ANPHD) and they had gone to rescue a group of paramedics and Franciscan missionaries, who had been surrounded by paramilitary forces at the Catholic Church since Sunday.
Over 200 paramilitary members and people wearing balaclavas had surrounded the Diriamba Basilica, hiding as the Catholic clergy reached the city. After that, civilians and some hooded men waited for the bishops to enter.
The following are a selection of photos that marked this moment.
The clergy returned to Managua after noon and they ended the day with a moment of prayer inside the Cathedral. “We have never seen anything like this here in Nicaragua, it’s really very sad. However, we have been proven right, I am happy in spite of my weaknesses, the insults, the persecutions and hardships Christ suffered,” Cardinal Leopoldo Brenes said to finish off.
In the afternoon, another pro-Ortega mob stormed the Santiago Parish Church in Jinotepe, damaging the Church’s furniture and burning the medicine stored for treating people injured during the attacks on the protests.