The Archdiocese of Guadalajara finally recognised what for months has been a claim of several local papers: that the intestinal crisis that forced the hospitalization of Cardinal Juan Sandoval Iniguez last year was the consequence of an attempt to poison the archbishop.
   In a short statement issued yesterday, the archdiocese admitted that the speculations about an attempt to poison the cardinal 'are founded.' It said, 'The cardinal admitted that there is ground for such claims, due to the sudden nature of his disease.'
   The archdiocese's statement explained that the disease that forced the urgent hospitalization and surgical intervention of Cardinal Sandoval on 6 June last year, was an 'intestinal thrombosis, a problem that happen only in elderly, persons with heart problems, and persons with tumors, none of which describes the cardinal's condition.'
   In fact, prior to and after his hospitalisation, Cardinal Sandoval had always been known for his solid health.
   Nevertheless, the document made clear that 'nothing concrete can be proved' regarding the possible authors or motives. It also denied that the cardinal has hired a personal bodyguard, as claimed by a local newspaper. 'The cardinal continues with his normal pastoral activities as usual,' the statement explained.
   The cardinal's health crisis took place when he was strongly demanding that Mexican authorities solve the case of the murder of his predecessor, Cardinal Jesus Posadas Ocampo.


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