Pope Francis reacts to Honduras prison riot
By Christian George
Pope Francis, at the Angelus on Sunday, prayed to Our Lady of Suyapa, the patroness of Honduras to “help hearts to open themselves to reconciliation and to make room for fraternal coexistence even within prisons.”
His prayer came as an aftermath of the June 20 attack at the female correctional facility in Tamara, Honduras leaving at least 40 inmates dead.
According to Vatican News, a preliminary investigation into the riot found severe security breakdowns that allowed gang members in the prison to attack their rivals with guns and machetes, and even burn some of them alive in their cells.
The Pope who prayed for the deceased and their family also frowned at the attack on the female correctional facility.
“I was very saddened by what happened a few days ago in the Támara Women’s Penitentiary Centre in Honduras”, the Pope said, deploring the “terrible violence between rival gangs” that “sowed death and suffering” while praying for those who died and for their families.
In a related development, the country’s president, Xiomara Castro who confirmed the attack said that the prison riot was organized by gang members.
He added that the gang members had “the knowledge and acquiescence of security authorities,” as he promised to take drastic measures.