Thursday, 21 June, 2018


Vandals Attack Churches In Chile 3 Days Ahead Of Pope's Visit

Vandals Attack Churches In Chile 3 Days Ahead Of Pope's Visit Vandals Attack Churches In Chile 3 Days Ahead Of Pope's Visit
Bennie Garza | 14 January, 2018, 12:55

Some flyers left behind warned that the next one was for the Pope. The Catholic Church has fallen out of favor in Chile, with the president urging citizens to welcome him with "respect".

Demonstrators used firebombs to attack four churches in the capital Santiago on Friday, leaving behind a note warning the pope: "The next bomb will be in your robe", according to Latin American broadcaster Telesur.

"In a democracy, people can express themselves as long as it's done in a pacifist way", Chile President Michelle Bachelet said in a radio interview on Friday morning. "What happened last night is very unusual".

Gaia Angelini, who heads the exotic animals division of the Italian animal protection group LAV, said: 'We are surprised to see the Vatican doing this'.

Nearly 80 Roman Catholic clergy have been accused of sexually abusing children in Chile since 2000, a US-based monitoring group said Thursday ahead of a visit to the country next week by Pope Francis.

Francis has also offered them a private tour of the Sistine Chapel and last November hosted about 7,000 people for a gourmet meal at the Vatican. "We will never submit to domination of our bodies, our ideas and actions", it said.

Authorities have said they are investigating the incidents, which caused no injuries, though they have yet to make any arrests.

Chilean Interior Minister Mahmud Aleuy arrived on the scene and condemned violence in a country where he said there was freedom of expression.

Francis, the first Latin American pontiff, has spoken out against such abuse, which has rocked the church for years, but has faced calls to improve accountability and transparency. Most of those cases remain unresolved.

Since then, the Catholic Church has lost much of the respect it gained during the reign of the late dictator Augusto Pinochet, when bishops criticized the regime for human rights abuses.

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