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New papal document tightens safeguards against money-laundering

August 08, 2013

Pope Francis has tightened safeguards against money-laundering at the Vatican, issuing a motu proprio that tightens internal regulations and establishes a new Financial Security Committee to coordinate financial transfers.

The new motu proprio, made public August 8, is aimed at “the prevention and countering of money laundering, the financing of terrorism, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.” In the document the Pope extends the rules that were set in place by Pope Benedict in 2010, applying them to all Vatican institutions. The rules had previously applied to Vatican institutions engaged in financial affairs; they now apply to all institutions that make financial transfers.

The motu proprio also strengthens the power of the Financial Information Authority, giving it supervisory authority over all agencies “habitually engaged in financial affairs.” The papal document notes that this step is a response to a recommendation made by European banking officials.


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