International

Pope Francis urges predator priests to turn themselves in, face justice

Pope Francis has urged priests who have raped and molested children to turn themselves in and prepare for “divine justice,” in his strongest condemnations yet of the Roman Catholic Church’s sexual abuse crisis.
The pope pledged that the church would “never again” cover up or dismiss sexual abuse cases.
“To those who abuse minors I would say this: convert and hand yourself over to human justice, and prepare for divine justice,” Francis said during his Christmas address to the Curia, the Vatican’s central administration, Reuters reported.

Pope accepts US bishop's resignation over 'misconduct' with minor

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Los Angeles auxiliary bishop Alexander Salazar over his "misconduct" with a minor, the Vatican said Wednesday.

The case is the latest in a litany of child sexual abuse scandals to have rocked the Roman Catholic Church and its 1.3 billion followers around the world.

Pope Francis has struggled to resolve the problem as the steady drip of scandal corrodes the church's authority but fresh cases surface regularly against a background of sharp divisions in Rome over the issue.

How teacher sexually abused boy, 13

An Arizona sixth-grade teacher accused of sexually abusing a 13-year-old boy allegedly texted him for several days because she was “bored,” newly released police reports show.
Police allege Brittany Zamora, 27, had an ongoing relationship with her student at Las Brisas Academy in Goodyear.
The police reports, first obtained by KPNX, allege Zamora set up a class chatroom called “Class Craft.”
The alleged victim told police that Zamora announced that she wasn’t going to be at school, so she asked her students to text her because she would be “bored.”

Somalia uproar continues after former al-Shabab No. 2 seized

Somalia saw a third day of protests on Saturday over the arrest of the former No. 2 leader of the al-Shabab extremist group, who has been a leading candidate for a regional presidency. Officials said at least eight people have been killed so far as angry supporters take to the streets and clash with police.

The African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia in a statement released overnight called for "utmost restraint" after the gunfire-fueled uproar around Muhktar Robow's arrest on Thursday in Baidoa, and it denied playing any role.

Pope cuts two cardinals from cabinet named in abuse scandal

By AP

Pope Francis has removed two cardinals from his informal cabinet after they were implicated in the Catholic Church's sex abuse and cover-up scandal, shedding embarrassing advisers ahead of a high-stakes Vatican summit on abuse early next year.

The Vatican said Wednesday that Francis in October had written to Chilean Cardinal Javier Errazuriz and Australian Cardinal George Pell thanking them for their five years of service on the so-called Group of Nine, or C-9.

Groups expose fossil fuel sponsors of climate change conference

….describe their activities as green facade

As the negotiations in the ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC) in  Poland heat up, Corporate Europe Observatory and Corporate Accountability have released a new infographic that exposes what they describe as “green façade” by the conference’ sponsors.

  Just days before the conference began in Katowice, the COP Presidency announced that a number of the meeting’s corporate sponsors would be from the coal, gas and fossil fuel financing industries.

Climate Change Conference: Govts under pressure over people’s demand

A global coalition of more than 220 organizations has issued a series of demands to world governments as the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP24) begins in Katowice, Poland.

Be celibate or leave the priesthood, pope tells gay priests

Men with deep-rooted homosexual tendencies should not be admitted to the Catholic clergy, and it would be better for priests who are actively gay to leave rather than lead a double life, Pope Francis says in a new book.

While he has previously spoken of the need for better screening of candidates for the religious life, his comments suggesting that priests who cannot keep their vows of celibacy should leave are some of his clearest to date.

Breaking: George Bush Senior dies

Former US President George HW Bush has died at the age of 94 at home in Houston, Texas.

Bush Sr served as the 41st US president between 1989 and 1993, his term defined by the end of the Cold War and the first Iraq war against Saddam Hussein.

While his health had been failing in recent years, he still managed to make public appearances.

The former president died at 22:10 local time on Friday (04:10 GMT Saturday), a family spokesperson said.

Saudi Crown Prince ordered Khashogghi’s murder – CIA

The US Central Intelligence Agency has concluded Saudi Arabia’s powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was behind the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, US media reported Friday, citing people close to the matter.

The US assessment directly contradicts the conclusions of a Saudi prosecutor one day prior, which exonerated the prince of involvement in the brutal murder.

But The Washington Post, which broke the story, said the CIA found that 15 Saudi agents flew on government aircraft to Istanbul and assassinated Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate.

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