Galileo Foundation Website
The foundation had its proud origins in its support for the Pontifical Academies of Sciences and Social Sciences, a collaboration which is still strong today. Their Chancellor, Bishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo, was tasked by the Holy Father with spearheading the Pope’s initiatives to find the ‘moral crime’ that is human trafficking. However, the Holy Father also asked the Pontifical Academy to examine the equally distressing practice of organ trafficking around the world.
In February 2017, the Galileo Foundation sponsored the first major international conference on Organ Trafficking since the Istanbul Declaration in 2008. More than 85 of the world’s experts in organ transplantation, from countries as diverse as China, India and Iran, Mexico and Algeria, gathered at the Pontifical Academy headquarters in the Vatican for a two-day conference on the question of how to tackle organ trafficking in today’s world.
Led by Boston-based surgeon Dr Frank Delmonico, one of the world’s leading experts on organ transplantation and an advisor to the WHO and the UN on the subject, the conference and its subsequent work made significant inroads into the global trade of organs, persuading countries like Iran, Turkey and China to adopt new universal protocols to prevent the illegal harvesting and the sale of human organs.