Geoffrey Robertson is disingenuous in claiming he does not want the Pope arrested and blaming the media (''Holding Pope responsible for abuses is not too dangerous'', September 29).
In the British newspaper The Guardian on April 2, Robertson specifically accused the Pope of a ''crime against humanity'' contrary to the rules of the International Criminal Court. It is only the realisation that this suggestion has made him look ridiculous in the eyes of other lawyers that has caused him to backtrack.
As far as the legal status of the Vatican is concerned, Robertson is presenting his personal opinion that the Vatican should not be a state and pretending that he is putting forward a legal argument.
More importantly, Robertson is pretending that the legal status of the Vatican is protecting abusive priests, but the reality is that Catholic priests and bishops throughout the world are citizens of their individual countries and not the Vatican and they are answerable to national law.
No country has ever suggested that the legal status of the Vatican has prevented the proper investigation of any allegations of abuse by any Catholic priest.
Neil Addison national director, Thomas More Legal Centre, Warrington (England)
Thursday, 30 September 2010
A letter from Neil Addison in the Sydney Morning Herald: