Pope blasts Trump administration policy on migrant family separation

Carolyn Kaster  AP

Carolyn Kaster AP

The policy being enforced by US law enforcement agencies on the orders of the Justice Department has led to the separation of children from their families and prompted a fierce backlash, including from members of Mr. Trump's own party.

The pontiff said that populists were "creating psychosis" about immigration and that Europe's aging population faces "a great demographic winter" and could "become empty" without immigrants. He added that he sided with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops about Trump's policy, a leading body of church leaders which sent out a missive condemning the zero-tolerance practice for putting battered women at risk and rending families asunder. He said that while he recognized solving the problem is not easy, populism is not the answer to the world's immigration problems.

President Trump has repeatedly blamed Democrats in Congress for creating the crisis by refusing to back legislation to reform USA laws on immigration.

"A person's dignity does not depend on them being a citizen, a migrant, or a refugee", he tweeted.

In the interview with Reuters, which touched on a number of other topics, the pope clearly expressed concern about Trump's immigration policy.

"Let it be clear that in these things, I respect (the position of) the bishops conference", the pope told Reuters.

Pope Francis attends a meeting with faithful of the diocese of Rome at Saint John Lateran Basilica in Rome, Italy, in a May 14, 2018 file photo. "What resolves things is acceptance, study, prudence".

"I believe that you can not reject people who arrive".

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