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Condoms aggravate AIDS problem: Pope

As the Pope embarked on his landmark visit to Africa,the pontiff courted controversy by declaring that condoms were not a solution to the AIDS epidemic but it ‘aggravates the problems’.

Written by Agencies | London |
March 17, 2009 9:42:24 pm

As the Pope embarked on his landmark visit to Africa,the pontiff courted controversy by declaring that condoms were not a solution to the AIDS epidemic but it ‘aggravates the problems’.

The Vatican encourages sexual abstinence to fight the spread of the killer disease.

81-year-old Pope Benedict told mediapersons en route to Cameroon that AIDS ‘is a tragedy that cannot be overcome by money alone,and that cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms,which even aggravates the problems’,‘The Times’ newspaper reported on Tuesday.

He has earlier said the ‘traditional teaching of the Church’ on chastity outside marriage and fidelity within it had proved to be ‘the only sure way of preventing the spread of HIV and AIDS’.

Some priests and nuns working with those living with HIV/AIDS question the church’s opposition to condoms amid the pandemic ravaging Africa.

Two years ago there was speculation that the Vatican might overturn its ban on condoms after Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini,the former Archbishop of Milan,said that in couples where one partner had HIV/AIDS,the use of condoms was ‘a lesser evil’,the report said.

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