Date: 24 Rabbi al-Thanni 1443   Monday 29 November 2021

  • Last Update: Monday 29 November 2021، 10:20:13.

Churches in France become institutions where sexual abuse happens most

06:25 07 October 2021 Author :  

Churches in France, where a recent investigation found 216,000 cases of child sex abuse in past 70 years, become the institutions where sexual abuse cases are most common in the country. 

The Independent Commission on Sexual Abuse in Churches (CIASE) issued a report on Wednesday following two and half years of work, shocking the whole country.

Twenty-one experts working on the case presented a grim picture of sexual abuse in churches that has been debated for years.

The 2,500-page report, prepared at the request of the Bishops' Conference of France (CEF) and the national congregations conference (CORREF), is based on church archives, interviews with victims and media coverage.

According to the probe, 56% of the incidents took place between 1950-1969. The number of cases rises to 330,000 when the incidents of sexual abuse perpetrated by employees in private schools and institutions affiliated with the Catholic Church are added.

Sexual violence against children by Christian clergy constitutes 4% of sexual violence in France. Sexual abuse cases in the country are mostly experienced in churches after the family circle.

The report showed that around 2,900 to 3,200 priests have sexually abused children since 1950. This corresponds to 2.5-2.8% of priests working in churches. It is stated that this number, obtained from the archives of religious institutions and the testimony of 6,500 people, may be higher.

Some 80% of the sexually abused children were male aged 10-13.

Eric de Moulins-Beaufort, president of the Bishops' Conference of France, stated that he is appalled by the report. "Today I want to apologize to each one of you."

CORREF head Veronique Margron, for her part, said: "I am utterly ashamed. I am saddened by the crimes committed in the church, this tragedy and the violence against children."

The commission made 45 recommendations to the Catholic Church regarding sexual abuses. The most striking of these was that the Catholic Church should accept the findings of the probe and pay compensation to the victims.

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