Australian human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson QC has declared that Australia should label the Vatican a "rogue state" and quit wasting billions of dollars maintaining an embassy there, given Pope Benedict's alleged failure to appropriately act on child sex abuse claims.
Robertson, a long advocate of a charter of human rights in Australia, argues that canon law is a flawed legal system given it carries a highly secretive nature, considers acts of child abuse a "sin" rather than a crime, and fails to deliver adequate punishment.
Speaking to the ABC this morning, Robertson said that the Pope should resign and that Australia should cut ties with the Vatican.
The comments come in line with the release of Robertson's new book, The Case of the Pope: Vatican Accountability for Human Rights Abuse, as well as the arrival of Pope Benedict in Britain today (16 September).
Robertson's book outlines why criminal actions should be taken against Pope Benedict, who has allegedly covered up child sex abuse in the Catholic Church.
Robertson also questions why 176 countries pursue diplomatic relationships with the Vatican and grant the state international recognition - given it only covers a small patch of land, has no citizens and frequently fails to fulfill treaty obligations.