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Asean & Global Updates
POSTED | 12:17 PM | 22-06-2014

Pope Francis hits out at Mafia

The Pope has attacked Italy's most dangerous and powerful Mafia-style crime syndicate, declaring that all Mafiosi “are excommunicated.”

During a visit to Calabria in southern Italy, the powerbase of the notorious 'Ndrangheta, Pope Francis said the crime group was an example of “the adoration of evil.”

The impromptu comments, made at a Mass in front of a crowd of thousands on Saturday, represent the strongest attack on organised crime since Pope John Paul lambasted the Sicilian Mafia in 1993.

“Those who in their lives follow this path of evil, as Mafiosi do, are not in communion with God,” said Pope Francis. “They are excommunicated.”

“This evil must be fought against, it must be pushed aside. We must say no to it,” he added.

Italian police investigators have found 'Ndrangheta particularly difficult to penetrate and it is now thought to have influence in more than 30 countries.

The Pope was in Calabria partly to fulfil his promise to meet the family of a toddler killed during drug turf wars in the area in January.

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