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Pope issues decree to fight against money laundering

2013-08-08

In a papal decree, Pope Francis issued new measures to fight against money laundering, and the financing of terrorist organizations. The measures would directly apply to all Vatican departments that deal with monetary activity. 

The decree, known as 'Motu Propio' follows the steps that were taken by Benedict XVI during his papacy. Part of the goal, is to get the Vatican into the so called 'white list' of countries that are in good standing with the Europe's anti- money laundering agency, known as 'Moneyval.' 

Under these measures, the Pope also gives the Vaticans Financial Information Authority, the power to supervise all Vatican departments where financial transactions are made. Up until now, its main function was limited to supervising the Vatican Bank.

In addition, the Pope also approved a new Financial Security Committee, so it can prevent and counteract  any type of money laundering, financing of terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

The committee will be chaired by American Msgr. Brian Wells, who serves as the general affairs adviser in the Vaticans Secretariat of State. The committee's secretary will be Rene Bruelhart, a  lawyer from Switzerland, who is also the director of the Financial Information Authority. The new regulations will take effect on August 10th, 2013.


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