Vatican recalls Dominican Republic envoy amid abuse claims

Pope Francis at the Vatican on 4 September 2013 Pope Francis has vowed to act against child abuse allegations within the Church

Related Stories

The Vatican has recalled its envoy to the Dominican Republic and launched an investigation after local media accused him of sexually abusing children.

Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski had been the Apostolic Nuncio in Santo Domingo for nearly six years.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told the Reuters news agency he had been "relieved of his duties" and the Holy See had "begun an investigation".

Archbishop Wesolowski had been recalled "in the last few weeks", he added.

But he did not give details about the allegations.

The attorney general of the Dominican Republic, Francisco Dominguez Brito, told the Associated Press that his office was investigating what he called "rumours" of abuse, and that it had received no formal complaints.

The whereabouts of the 65-year-old Polish prelate are unknown.

Following his election in March, Pope Francis said dealing with sex abuse allegations was vital to the Roman Catholic Church's credibility.

In July, he strengthened laws that apply to clerics and lay people working in the Vatican - broadening out the definition of "crimes against minors" to include child prostitution, sexual violence, sexual acts with children, and indecent images of children.

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Latin America & Caribbean stories

RSS

Features

  • Peaky Blinders publicity shotBrum do

    Why is the Birmingham accent so difficult to mimic?


  • Oliver CromwellA brief history

    The 900 year story behind the creation of a UK parliament


  • Image of Ankor Wat using lidarJungle Atlantis

    How lasers have revealed an ancient city beneath the forest


  • TheatreBard taste? Watch

    Are trailer videos on social media spoiling theatre?


  • A dog being dragged along the roadFlesh search

    An abused dog leads to an online hunt for the perpetrator


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.