High-Ranking Politician Disregards Agreement with the Vatican

Country: Spain

Date of incident: May 31, 2006

The Secretary of the State Department of Communications, Fernando Moraleda, declared that the Government will "not pay more attention to the catechism than to the [official] program". Moraleda´s statement came right after the Pope Benedict XVI requested the teaching of religion in the schools be conducted in similar conditions to other subjects and as it has been agreed to in an international treaty signed by Spain and the Vatican. These agreements are mandatory law for Spain. "The Government has a program and it cannot pay attention to the catechism", Moraleda added.

Moraleda was also asked about the funding of the Catholic Church in Spain. "It does not make any sense to fund the Catholic Church as Spain is a secular country", he stated.
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