expels U.S •
Guatemala last week ordered the expulsion of five Catholic
missionaries three Americans. a West German and it Spaniard — on charges of meddling in local polities.
Bishop Juan Gerardi Conedera of Vera Paz head of the Guatemalan Episcopal Conlerence. told reporters the rive priests had been accused of campaigning 'or the National Opposition Front in recent general elections. He said several more foreign pricsis were expected to he expelled_ The Ministry or the Interior had mentioned a total or I I.
Bishop Gerardi denied that the priests had been involved in politics, and aceused local politicians of using the election as an excuse to expel roreien priests. The five priests were given eight to 15 days to leave Guatemala.
The Americans. were identifed as Frs William Price, Thomas Fox and Joseph Tobble of the Maryknoll Order, the German priest as Fr Sigiried Heiner, and the Spaniard as Fr Secundino Varela.
The Episcopal Conference sent a message to President Carlos Arana Osorio expressing "surprise and concern" at what it called an "unjust expulsion order.