Lone Swaziland bishop says country can’t take painkillers without understanding the pain

By: Inés San Martín (ROME BUREAU CHIEF)

ROME – As violence continues to grip the small southern Africa nation of Eswatini, formerly known as Swaziland and the continent’s last remaining monarchy, the country’s lone Catholic bishop says the challenge isn’t just to stop the bloodshed, but to understand why it’s happening.

“We need to understand how we reached to this point,” Bishop José Luis Gerardo Ponce de León told Crux. “It won’t be possible to move forward without it. It would be like going to the doctor because we are in pain and accepting to live on painkillers, without really knowing where the pain comes from.”

The current round of violence began in late May with the murder of a young law student, speaking protests from thousands of people which, in turn, triggered a harsh government crackdown.

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