NewsPope: child abuse is "psychological murder"

Pope: child abuse is "psychological murder"

Pope Francis has called child abuse “an eradication of childhood”. The head of the Catholic church spoke to members of an anti-abuse group.

Rome (AP) – Pope Francis has described child sexual abuse as a kind of mental murder.

The crimes would be committed in schools, in sports, in leisure facilities and religious communities as well as among individuals and would have to be consistently exposed, said the head of the Catholic Church in the Vatican. “Child abuse is a kind of” psychological murder “and in many cases an eradication of childhood,” admonished Francis.

The Pope spoke at an audience for members of the Italian anti-abuse group called Meter. The protection of children from sexual exploitation is a duty of all states. This would have to prosecute and punish both traffickers and perpetrators of abuse crimes, said Francis. The 84-year-old criticized the advertising for child pornography that takes place on the Internet and various social media.

The Catholic Church itself is also repeatedly criticized for hiding cases of child abuse within its own ranks. She is also accused of not dealing with dignitaries quickly enough.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210515-99-608538 / 2

About the organization meter; Italian

About the Pope’s audience for the Meter group; Vatican News

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