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Vatican Warns of Tourism's Ill Effects

July 14, 2001

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican warned this week that globalization of tourism poses the risk of imposing "a new form of slavery and dependence" on Third World countries.

The Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples issued the warning in a 26-page document on "Orientations for the Pastorate of Tourism," which urged forms of tourism that safeguard "the rights of persons and the equilibrium of the environment."

While asserting that globalization in itself is "neither good nor bad," the council said development for mass tourism often carries with it such "ill effects" as sexual exploitation and the spread of HIV/AIDS and drugs.

Christians should use their vacations as a time for reconciliation with themselves, others and God, and religious communities should not only welcome tourists to their cathedrals and churches but invite them to become guests, the council said.

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