Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani of Lima has reiterated the Church’s call to peace and said social conflicts can only be resolved when there is order and adherence to the truth.
Speaking to reporters on May 31, Cardinal Cipriani referred to recent anti-mining protests that took place in the province of Espinar which left two people dead and forced the government to declare a state of emergency.
“People cannot use rocks and lies to achieve development,” he said. “Dialogue is not possible when there is no desire for truth, peace and justice.”
“Peace, St. Augustine says, is tranquility in order. I think there is a lack of order and there has to be respect for the law and for authority for there to be order,” the cardinal added. “We cannot get used to throwing stones and killing in order to demand dialogue.”
He noted that most Peruvians do not agree with the tactics used by the protestors. All Peruvians “want progress, development and social inclusion,” but “not through violence.”
“Peru is a peaceful nation that wants justice and wants the truth. For this reason, let’s not abuse the word ‘dialogue’ when we see so much violence and abuse,” he said.
Peace “is the task not only of those in authority but of all Peruvians,” Cardinal Cipriani underscored.
“People need to be provided improvement, investment, water, power, roads and infrastructure, but not by throwing (stones), not through deception.”