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  • The fiercely political speech in Turin was the latest progressive commentary from Pope Francis, after last week calling for action on climate change.

    The fiercely political speech in Turin was the latest progressive commentary from Pope Francis, after last week calling for action on climate change. | Photo: Reuters

Published 22 June 2015

The Pope says Christians are hypocritical if they support the global arms trade.

Pope Francis condemned weapons manufacturers as un-Christian during a fiery speech Sunday.

During an event in the Italian city of Turin, the Pope delivered a largely unscripted speech on various themes, including trust and war.

“It makes me think of ... people, managers, businessmen who call themselves Christian and they manufacture weapons. That leads to a bit of distrust, doesn't it?” he said.

The comment was met by a round of applause.

He continued by slamming investors in the global arms industry, stating, “duplicity is the currency of today ... they say one thing and do another.”

During the same speech, Pope Francis spoke out in favor of migrant rights, while condemning government corruption.

"Immigration increases competition, but migrants should not be blamed because they are the victims of injustice, of this throw-away economy, of wars," he said. The Pope also criticized the way in which migrants are treated in some countries and the many difficulties they face.

“It makes one cry to see the spectacle of these days in which human beings have been treated like merchandise,” he added.

The fiercely political speech in Turin was the latest progressive commentary from Pope Francis, after last week issuing an encyclical calling for action on climate change.

“Doomsday predictions can no longer be met with irony or disdain. We may well be leaving to coming generations debris, desolation and filth,” the pope wrote in the nearly 200-page essay. The Pope described a relentless exploitation and destruction of the environment. He blamed this on apathy, the reckless pursuit of profits, excessive faith in technology, and the lack of political vision.

He also squarely linked climate change to another issue that has already been established as a key theme of his time as head of the Catholic Church – poverty. The Pope warned that the world's poor will be worst affected by climate change, with disadvantaged communities that rely most on the natural environment for day-to-day survival most imperiled. “They have no other financial activities or resources which can enable them to adapt to climate change,” he said.

RELATED: Watch teleSUR’s news coverage of the Pope’s calls for the environment (from 13.30)

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