Paraguayans Crucify Themselves For Pope

As Pope Francis visits Paraguay, a group of former employees of the Itaipu dam – shared by the governments of Brazil and Paraguay – requested Friday that Pope Francis visits them to listen to their complaints. “We hope that the pope will listen to our complaint, we would like – if he can – that he visit us in our struggle,” explained Rosa Caceres, one of the crucified protesters, to news agency EFE. A group of seven former employees crucified themselves in front of the Brazilian Embassy in Asuncion, Paraguay’s capital city, in the hope of drawing the pope’s attention to the issue.

Workers are demanding compensationand different labor benefits that were never paid to them by the government. Their demands are backed by a treaty signed by both Brazil and Paraguay almost 40 years ago. The Itaipu Bi-national Company, which administers the dam, has already discarded paying any of the benefits to the workers through a statement. The company alleges the people crucified are not linked and never worked with the company. But the statement did not refer to the rest of the protesters. The crucified workers have spent 10 days on their crucifixes in a protest that began long before the arrival of Pope Francis.


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