Local November 30, 2015 | 8:47 am

Dominican Republic Catholic Church accuses US envoy of extortion

Santo Domingo.-Dominican Republic´s Catholic Church on Sunday slammed US ambassador JamesBrewster accusing him of extortion when he challenged anyone who doesn’t agreewith his criticism of the country´s corruption and other ills to hand in theirUS visa.

Santo Domingo auxiliarybishop Victor Masalles said even though the diplomat "is right in regardto corruption, he doesn’t seem interested in solving that problem, and ratheruse it as a bridge to get his well-known LGBT agenda."

For Youth Ministrycoordinator padre Luis Rosario the way Brewster dealt with the topic of corruptionis "shameful."

In a tweet Masalles respondsto the US envoy´s scathing statements as speaker at an American Chamber ofCommerce luncheon last week.

He said Brewster isright about corruption but not the way he did so. "He is not right inregards to meddling in Dominican Republic´s internal affairs and pretend theyare not interference. He has no right to blackmail people who criticize him, threateningto take their (US) visa. It restricts freedom of expression.”

The prelate said the USambassador "doesn’t seem interested in solving that problem, but use it asa bridge to get his well-known LGBT agenda in the country."

Rosario alsoacknowledged that Brewster spoke the truth on corruption, but rejected the waythe diplomat addressed it.

"It has been causefor embarrassment and gives us more shame to see how the authorities withstandthis type of situation, because one thing is that there´s a difficult reality onthe issue of corruption, but it´s something else that someone comes to rub itin our face the difficult situation in which we are going through in a role whichdoesn’t correspond them to," he said.

He also called "inadequate"Brewster´s challenge to anyone who doesn’t like his criticism to hand in theirUS visa.

"That is extortion.That does not correspond to a people that has dignity and is able to lift theirhead high with some pride. The National Anthem is trampled, because we are alsoslaves at the economic level and with such ridiculous things like having a visa.”

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