Pope: Corruption is ‘social virus’ infecting Latin America

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Pope: Corruption is ‘social virus’ infecting Latin America
Pope: Corruption is ‘social virus’ infecting Latin America

LIMA, Peru (AP) – Pope Francis has strongly condemned corruption in Latin America as a “social virus” infecting all aspects of life in stern remarks to Peru’s president and high-ranking political leaders, several of whom are embroiled in the region’s biggest graft scandal.

Hours after decrying the destruction of Peru’s Amazon, the pontiff on Friday warned President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski and other leaders that another form of environmental degradation is also pervading society: corruption.

“How much evil is done to our Latin American people and the democracies of this content by this social virus,” the pope said. “Everything being done to combat this social scourge deserves our utmost attention.”

The remarks come less than a month after Kuczynski avoided impeachment over payments Brazilian company Odebrecht made to his consulting firm over a decade ago.

Pope Francis listens to the speech by Peru’s President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski at the government palace in Lima, Peru, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (AP Photo/Karel Navarro)
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