The Malta Independent 25 May 2019, Saturday

In Brazil, Maltese nun campaigns against World Cup sex trafficking

Malta Independent Friday, 30 May 2014, 09:00 Last update: about 6 years ago

This week, a group of nuns in Brazil, including Maltese nun Sister Carmen Sammut, launched a campaign against what they see as the growing risk of human trafficking, worker exploitation, forced prostitution and sex tourism during next month’s FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

The nuns, whose initiative is being supported by Pope Francis and the US Embassy to the Vatican, unveiled their campaign Play in Favour of Life on Tuesday.

“We need to make people aware of what happens on the fringes of major events such as the FIFA World Cup, and the suffering of those who are trafficked”, Sister Carmen said this week at the launch of the campaign. 

“Without this awareness, without acting together on behalf of human dignity, the World Cup can become something horribly embarrassing rather than a festival for humanity”, she said at a news conference at the Vatican.

Sister Carmen said the initiative has the full support of Pope Francis, an Argentine who loves football and has convened several meetings at the Vatican to study ways of combating human trafficking.

The nuns said that statistics show that sexual exploitation had increased by 30 per cent in connection with the World Cup in Germany in 2006 and by 40 per cent in South Africa in 2010.

The sisters are seeking to raise awareness of human trafficking and other dangers related to the World Cup in Brazil through their blog at gritopelavida.blogspot.com.br, and their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/jogueafavordavida

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