Nuns, backed by pope, warn of human trafficking at World Cup
* Nuns have backing of Pope, U.S. embassy to Vatican
* They say trafficking, sex crime will rise during World Cup
* Awareness campaign, demonstrations planned
By Philip Pullella
VATICAN CITY, May 20 (Reuters) - Roman Catholic nuns backed by Pope Francis on Tuesday raised the alarm over increased risks of human trafficking, exploitation of workers, forced prostitution and sexual tourism at the soccer World Cup in Brazil next month.
The nuns, whose campaign is also backed by the U.S. embassy to the Vatican, announced an international campaign called "Play in Favour of Life - Denounce Human Trafficking," on the risks they say will be associated with the June 12 - July 13 tournament.
"We need to make people conscious of what happens on the margins of big world events such as the FIFA World Cup and the suffering of those who are trafficked," said Sister Carmen Sammut, a Maltese nun and one of the campaign organisers.
"Without this awareness, without acting together in favour of human dignity, the World Cup finals may turn out to be a terrible shame instead of a feast for humanity," she told a news conference at the Vatican.
Sammut said the initiative had the full backing of Pope Francis, an avid Argentine soccer fan who has called several conferences at the Vatican to study ways of combating human trafficking. Continuación...