Catholic’s Pope Francis has issued warning on Monday against a resurgence of nationalist and populist movements and criticized countries that try to solve the migration crisis with unilateral or isolationist actions.
The Church leader, speaking to diplomats in an annual speech known informally as his “state of the world” address, suggested such movements and closed-door policies were turning the clock back 100 years to the dangerous period between the world wars.
Relationships within the international community “are experiencing a period of difficulty, with the resurgence of nationalistic tendencies,” the Pope said, making dialogue between countries and hurting the most vulnerable members of society, including migrants.
Last year, populist anti-immigrant parties made gains in a number of countries, including Italy, France, the Netherlands, Hungary, Brazil and Poland.
In the United States, a partial government shutdown entered its third week as President Donald Trump has pledged not to bend in his demand for a wall along the southern border with Mexico..
In his hour-long speech, the Pontiff several times mentioned the League of Nations, which was set up after World War One to promote peace but failed to stop the nationalist and populist movements that helped lead to World War Two.
“The reappearance of these impulses today is progressively weakening the multilateral system,” he told envoys from 183 countries in the speech, which touched on the situation in many countries.