Pope calls Canada Indigenous abuse 'genocide'

TEHRAN, Jul. 30 (MNA) – Pope Francis said Saturday the decades-long abuse of Indigenous schoolchildren across Canada amounted to "genocide".

Pope Francis said Saturday the decades-long abuse of Indigenous schoolchildren across Canada amounted to "genocide", as he warned upon his return to Rome that he needed to slow down his travel pace -- or resign, according to the AFP.

On Saturday, aboard the papal plane, he used the word "genocide" to describe the decades of maltreatment and sexual abuse against Canada's Indigenous children. 

"I didn't say the word (in Canada) because it didn't come to my mind, but I did describe the genocide. And I asked for forgiveness for this process which was genocide," he told reporters.

During his six-day "penitential pilgrimage" across Canada this week, the 85-year-old pope offered a historic apology to the First Nations, Metis and Inuit people, who have been waiting for years for such an acknowledgement from the head of the world's 1.3 billion Catholics.

The Pope on Friday met with Canadian Indigenous delegations, expressing his profound sorrow and asking for pardon for the suffering inflicted by some members of the Catholic Church. 

KI/PR

News Code 189642

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