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Pope Francis advances eight new causes of sainthood

January 23, 2017. On January 20, Pope Francis met with Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to announce the publication of decrees for the advancement of eight causes of sainthood.
Vatican

Holy See confirms investigation of Order of Malta

January 17, 2017. The Holy See has issued a statement Tuesday in response to "attempts by the Order of Malta to discredit” the new group established by the Vatican to conduct the investigation of why the Chancellor of the Order of Malta was asked to step down.
World

Pope sends condolences for victims of Turkish cargo jet crash

January 16, 2017. On Monday morning, a Turkish cargo plane has tragically crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing dozens and hospitalizing many others. Many homes and vehicles in the small village are also destroyed. As a result, Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin has sent a message of condolences to the victims of the disaster on behalf of Pope Francis.
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Pope Francis to meet with Palestinian president on Saturday

January 11, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Palestinian president, Mahmud Abbas on Saturday, January 14, at the Vatican to inaugurate the new Palestinian embassy to the Holy See.
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Former Director of the Vatican's school for diplomats, Justo Mullor dies

December 30, 2016. The smiling archbishop Justo Mullor died this morning in Rome, at the Pío XI Clinic. He was 84 years old.

6,609 convictions for human trafficking in the year 2015 and roughly 20 million victims

2016-07-19

Trafficking in Persons continues to be a major threat to Human Rights, according to the annual report published by the US Department of State. Last year, there were 6609 convictions for trafficking in persons, whereas the report estimates that there are 20 million victims of this crime.

Human trafficking encompasses a wide range of illegal activities, such as sex trafficking, forced labor and unlawful recruitment and child soldiers. The report, presented by Secretary of State John Kerry, aims to raise awareness of practices.

JOHN KERRY
US Secretary of State
"When we talk about human trafficking, we're talking about slavery. Modern day slavery, that still today claims more than 20 million victims, on any given time."

The report also divides countries into three tiers according to the extent of these practices within its borders, and what their governments are doing to prevent them.

Susan Coppedge, Ambassador-at-Large to Combat and Monitor Trafficking in Persons, who has championed the report, praised the work that was done in the Vatican Summit for Human Trafficking in the month of June.

SUSAN COPPEDGE
US Ambassador-at-Large to Combat and Monitor Trafficking in Persons
"The summit explored the need for victim supported services, instead of punishments for crimes committed under duress. While Pope Francis has a unique ability to gather and rally diverse groups, leaders across communities, businesses, governments, and NGO's can likewise demonstrate the power of collaboration in fighting the scourge of modern slavery.”

The summit was attended by high-ranking officials from the United States, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Great Britain. Mexican and Italian prosecutors also participated.

The report also recognized the work of several organizations, including the Santa Marta Group, named after the Pope's residence. The group was formed in Rome during April 2014, when police chiefs and religious leaders came together, in the presence of Pope Francis, to sign a declaration committing themselves to a partnership to eliminate human trafficking in all its forms. 


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US DEPT of State
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