2019 Aug 20, 10:55am
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The bishop of Gozo, Malta, said this week that it “pains him” to watch Italian interior minister Matteo Salvini holding rosary beads while calling for a stop to the “Islamic invasion.”Speaking on Catholic radio on Saturday, Bishop Mario Grech alleged that “people who use Christian beliefs to bolster populism are manipulators,” the Times of Malta reported.Catholics with such narrow beliefs want to return to a sectarian Church that goes against the spirit of unity set by the Second Vatican Council, the bishop said, claiming that using Christian beliefs to affirm sovereignty is a sign people want to reverse the process of modernization.This is not the first time Bishop Grech has criticized Salvini. Already in July 2018, Grech said he was “gravely concerned” by Salvini’s decision to close Italy’s ports and publicly backed a statement by NGOs claiming that the consequences of such a move “are potentially fatal, as the vessels will no longer be able to continue saving lives in the Mediterranean Sea.”“Although supposedly aimed at ensuring respect for the law, this action directly undermines the protection of human life at Europe’s borders, making them even more dangerous for refugees and asylum seekers,” the migrant ferry operators claimed.
The Italian PM was set to face a vote of no confidence brought by Salvini’s party after the Five Star Movement overwhelmingly opposed a recent vote on the Italian-French TAV train tunnel project.On the floor of the Italian senate, Mr Conte blasted Salvini, accusing the Interior Minister of “political opportunism,” according to a report from Italian newspaper Il Giornale.“Government crises are faced in Parliament, not in the public squares,” Conte continued and slammed Salvini for various issues including his use of religious symbols, a critique often deployed by members of the Roman Catholic clergy hostile to Salvini’s anti-mass migration policies.While he announced his resignation as Prime Minister, Conte said that he hoped Italian President Sergio Mattarrella would not choose to hold a snap election, saying it could block current reforms.
Bishop Mario Grech alleged that “people who use Christian beliefs to bolster populism are manipulators,”