AMERICA/VENEZUELA - "The solution is not barbarism": the Archbishop of Ciudad Bolivar after the violence and ransacking

Tuesday, 20 December 2016 hunger   human rights   violence   politics  

Ciudad Bolivar (Agenzia Fides) - "We strongly believe that the solution is not barbarism, acts of vandalism and irrationality. We can solve our conflicts in a civilized, peaceful and democratic framework. Violence is the weapon of those who have no reason", says the statement of His Exc. Mgr. Ulises Antonio Gutiérrez Reyes, Archbishop of Ciudad Bolivar, published on December 19 after the vandalism and ransacking of shops in the city which took place during the weekend.
"We are a people identified with justice and peace, respectful of moral and spiritual values rooted in our families. In Venezuela we are going through a difficult period ... We live in a society where there is a structural sin at the root, which always imposes the culture of death, chaos and confusion", continues the text, sent to Fides.
"We invite everyone to remain protagonists of the common good, to make our voices heard, to enforce our rights, rejecting all forms of violence, and not to take part in these acts that contradict our condition as Christians" reaffirms the Archbishop. "We are very concerned about the silence of the media, both at a national and regional level, this has encouraged rumors, panic and anxiety among the population", the statement concluded.
According to data collected by Fides, about 450 shops were completely emptied and destroyed, many even set on fire for no reason. "It is the first time in history that such a thing happens in Ciudad Bolivar, this is a city that thrives on commerce. 80% of the economic movement in the city is generated by trade, there are no industries, and this affects us a lot", said the president of the Chamber of Commerce of the state of Bolivar. Many testimonies on social networks denounce the latest economic measures of the government against the population as the main cause of this particular situation (see Fides 19/12/2016). The Bishops themselves had warned about the danger of this type of reaction. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 20/12/2016)