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AFP
September 16, 2018
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Sex abuse claims rock Dutch Catholic Church

World

AFP
September 16, 2018

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THE HAGUE: More than half of the Netherlands’ senior clerics were involved in covering up sexual assault of children between 1945 and 2010, a press report claimed on Saturday, further engulfing the Catholic Church in a global abuse scandal. Over the course of 65 years, 20 of 39 Dutch cardinals, bishops and their auxiliaries "covered up sexual abuse, allowing the perpetrators to cause many more victims", the daily NRC reported.

"Four abused children and 16 others allowed the transfer of paedophile priests who could have caused new victims in other parishes," the Dutch newspaper added. Church spokeswoman Daphne van Roosendaal told AFP the church could "confirm a part" of the report.

Other elements were based on anonymous information provided by a victims’ assistance unit set up by the church.

"The names of several bishops correspond to those named in a report commissioned by the Church in 2010," the spokeswoman said.

Most of the accused clerics have since died, and the statute of limitations has expired in all cases, she added. Those still alive declined to comment, NRC said. It is the latest in a slew of assault allegations against the Catholic Church spanning several continents.

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