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Senior bank official ‘sacked and escorted out of the Vatican’

The headquarters of the Institute for Religious Works (IOR) the Vatican's bank (GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images)

The deputy director of the Institute for Religious Works (IOR), commonly known as the Vatican bank, was removed from his position and escorted out of the Vatican on Monday.

Giulio Mattietti had held the position for two years before he was suddenly sacked this week. Crux reports that Vatican spokeswoman Paloma García Ovejero told local news agency ANSA, “Giulio Mattietti, deputy director general of the Institute of Religious Works, has ceased his service Monday November 27,” but decline to give any reason for his removal.

Italian media say another IOR employee may also have been removed in the past few days, although details are not clear.

In June, Vatican Auditor General Libero Milone resigned suddenly without any initial explanation.

He eventually broke his silence to claim he was forced out after uncovering possible illegal activity. Vatican officials responded by accusing him of spying.

“I couldn’t allow any longer a small group of powers to [defame] my reputation for their shady games,” Milone told reporters.

“I wanted to do good for the Church, to reform it like I was asked, but they wouldn’t let me.”

However, Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu, the Vatican’s deputy secretary of state, said Mr Milone “went against all the rules and was spying on the private lives of his superiors and staff, including me.”

Recently, the former president of the Vatican-owned Bambino Gesù children’s hospital was convicted of diverting nearly half a million euros to pay for the renovation of a cardinal’s flat.