When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Sources

Australia's Top Cardinal Apologizes For Priests' Sex Abuse, But Wants Payout Limits

ABC, THE AGE, SKY NEWS AUSTRALIA, SYNDEY MORNING HERALD (Australia)

Worldcrunch

MELBOURNE - Australia’s top Cardinal George Pell acknowledged Monday that senior members of the Australian Catholic Church had covered up cases of sexual abuse. "I am fully apologetic and absolutely sorry," Pell said. "I'm certainly totally committed to improving the situation. I know the Holy Father is too."

At a child abuse inquiry in the southern state of Victoria, Cardinal Pell said the Catholic Church's history of sexual abuse stems from loose entry requirements for priests, past errors of judgement and inaction, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

Cardinal Pell in 2007. Photo by Gavin Scott

According to Sky News Australia, the cardinal also deemed celibacy a potential factor in the high rate of child sex abuse within the Catholic Church.

Pell told the inquiry the Church has been the victim of years of "intermittent hostility from the press," but conceded that it has helped uncover some of the Church's failings. Overall, the Catholic Church said at least 620 Victorian children had been abused by the clergy over the past 80 years, ABC reported.

Pell said that his predecessor as Archbishop of Melbourne, Frank Little, was involved in a cover-up and another archbishop had destroyed documents but he firmly denied any personal involvement or covering-up, reports ABC.

Cardinal Pell said the Church will pay the victims appropriate compensation, but he does not think it has a moral obligation to match the multi-million-dollar payouts that occurred in the U.S., writes The Age. The maximum payout figure in Australia so far has been AUS$75,000 ($72,000).

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Society

In Northern Kenya, Where Climate Change Is Measured In Starving Children

The worst drought in 40 years, which has deepened from the effects of climate change, is hitting the young the hardest around the Horn of Africa. A close-up look at the victims, and attempts to save lives and limit lasting effects on an already fragile region in Kenya.

Photo of five mothers holding their malnourished children

At feeding time, nurses and aides encourage mothers to socialize their children and stimulate them to eat.

Georgina Gustin

KAKUMA — The words "Stabilization Ward" are painted in uneven black letters above the entrance, but everyone in this massive refugee camp in Kakuma, Kenya, calls it ya maziwa: The place of milk.

Rescue workers and doctors, mothers and fathers, have carried hundreds of starving children through the doors of this one-room hospital wing, which is sometimes so crowded that babies and toddlers have to share beds. A pediatric unit is only a few steps away, but malnourished children don’t go there. They need special care, and even that doesn’t always save them.

In an office of the International Rescue Committee nearby, Vincent Opinya sits behind a desk with figures on dry-erase boards and a map of the camp on the walls around him. “We’ve lost 45 children this year due to malnutrition,” he says, juggling emergencies, phone calls, and texts. “We’re seeing a significant increase in malnutrition cases as a result of the drought — the worst we’ve faced in 40 years.”

From January to June, the ward experienced an 800 percent rise in admissions of children under 5 who needed treatment for malnourishment — a surge that aid groups blame mostly on a climate change-fueled drought that has turned the region into a parched barren.

Opinya, the nutrition manager for the IRC here, has had to rattle off these statistics many times, but the reality of the numbers is starting to crack his professional armor. “It’s a very sad situation,” he says, wearily. And he believes it will only get worse. A third year of drought is likely on the way.

More children may die. But millions will survive malnutrition and hunger only to live through a compromised future, researchers say. The longer-term health effects of this drought — weakened immune systems, developmental problems — will persist for a generation or more, with consequences that will cascade into communities and societies for decades.

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest