Pope Francis arrives in Peru for final leg of South American trip, hits out at human traffickers in front of 50,000-strong congregation [Photos]
Pope Francis arrived in Peru on the final leg of his South American trip, where he will meet indigenous people.
Pope Francis arrived on Thursday in Peru on the final leg of his South American trip, where he will meet indigenous people and hear firsthand how the country's gold rush is destroying large areas of their Amazon homeland. Reuters
In the northern border region of Iquique — which he said was "the land of dreams" for so many — the pope hit out at human traffickers and others who seek to take advantage of helpless immigrants. "Let us be attentive to those who profit from the irregular status of many immigrants who don't know the language or who don't have their papers 'in order,'" Francis told a colourful congregation of some 50,000 people at an open-air mass on Iquique's sprawling Lobito beach. Reuters
Francis had told Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, lawmakers, judges and other authorities that he felt "bound to express my pain and shame" that some of Chile's clergy had sexually abused children in their care. "I am one with my brother bishops, for it is right to ask forgiveness and make every effort to support the victims, even as we commit ourselves to ensuring that such things do not happen again," the pope said. Reuters
The 81-year-old pontiff has confronted sensitive issues at every turn since he began his visit Monday, offering an apology to victims of priestly sexual abuse, praying with survivors of Augusto Pinochet's brutal dictatorship, and calling for protection of the rights of Chile's persecuted indigenous communities. Reuters