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Arms trade sustains warfare, says Vatican envoy to UN

September 10, 2013

The Vatican’s representatives at UN headquarters in Geneva has stated that arms trafficking contributes to the frequency of war.

Citing a statement by Pope Francis at his Angelus audience on September 9, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi said that “the Holy Father has put his finger on a real problem that is affecting the international community today.” The Pontiff had questioned whether some wars are incited for commercial reasons—“to sell these arms on the black market.”

“It is not a new problem, but it is a real one,” Archbishop Tomasi told Vatican Radio. He said that “the legal trafficking in arms becomes a major factor that contributes to violence and to wars.” Without referring to “black market” trafficking, the archbishop explained that the arms trade “is sustaining the continuation of conflict, giving false assurance to the people who own these weapons that they can continue to use force to maintain their power without taking into account the demands of their own population and of the international community.”


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