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Pope says governments have duty to combat drug traffickers

Pope Francis walks during an audience for members of the diocesis of Molfetta and Ugento-Santa Maria di Leuca, at the Vatican, Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis says it is the duty of governments to fight drug traffickers, who peddle “death.”

Francis, addressing participants at a Vatican conference on drug addiction on Saturday, decried “pathological forms derived from a secularized cultural climate, marked by the capitalism of consumption.” He also noted “existential emptiness” and the “precariousness” of human ties.

Conference participants had grappled with issues “of old and new addictions that block integral human development,” he said.

Francis called on everyone to combat the production and distribution of such drugs and said it is the task of governments “to face with courage this fight against the traffickers of death.”

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