Pope slams legalisation of some drugs in Latin America

The Pope took a strong stance against the legalisation of drugs as a means to fight drug addiction and criticized the trend in Latin America to decriminalise narcotics.

Pope Francis embraces a patient at the Hospital Sao Francisco.
Pope Francis embraces a patient at the Hospital Sao Francisco. Credit: Reuters

In his first public address on the issue, the new Pope Francis said education was the way to end drug use.

The pontiff was visiting a new treatment facility for alcoholics and drug addicts at the Sao Francisco Hospital in Rio de Janeiro as part of his week-long visit to Brazil centred on the Catholic Church's World Youth Day.

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Pope ends historic Brazil tour

Pope Francis has left Brazil with Rio still pulsating with excitement after an historic beachfront Mass for more than 3 million people in which he challenged young people to build a new world based on tolerance and love.