Pope Francis in Congo: Africa is the world’s hope, not a terrain to be plundered
…… Pope Francis says richer countries need to see Africa beyond an opportunity for plundering.
In a visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on Tuesday, the Pope condemned the “terrible forms of exploitation, unworthy of humanity” in the country.
He asked rich countries to acknowledge the “catastrophic” injustices committed in the past, and end the ongoing plundering of the continent’s natural resources.
“Hands off the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Hands off Africa. Stop choking Africa; it is not a mine to be stripped or a terrain to be plundered,” the cleric said.
“May the world acknowledge the catastrophic things done to the detriment of the local peoples, and not forget this country and this continent.
“May Africa, the smile and hope of the world, count for more. May it have greater weight and prestige among the nations!”
Francis also called for more efforts to support development and peace in DRC, as the country has been experiencing extended conflicts.
“The current peace processes, which I greatly encourage, need to be sustained by concrete deeds, and commitments should be maintained,” the Pope said.
“Room needs to be made for diplomacy that is authentically human, for a diplomacy where peoples are concerned for other peoples, for a diplomacy centred not on control over land and resources, expansionism and increased profits, but rather on providing opportunities for people to grow and develop.”
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Pope Francis added that there is a need for transparency in the African political process, saying it would promote credible elections and the greater good of the people.
The cleric also said what “dims the light of goodness in a society is often the darkness of injustice and corruption”.