The federal government has confirmed that Canada asked France to extradite a priest who is accused of crimes against children in Nunavut.
A spokesman for the Justice Department says the Public Prosecution Service of Canada made the extradition request for Johannes Rivoire, but did not say when and provided no more details.
Pope Francis is expected to travel to Nunavut this week as part of his visit to Canada, where he apologized to residential school survivors.
Inuit leaders have called on the pontiff to personally intervene in the case of Rivoire, who was in Canada from the early 1960s until 1993, when he returned to France.
The RCMP says Rivoire is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, issued in February, for a charge of sexual assault stemming from a complaint received last year.
Rivoire has previously avoided trial for multiple allegations of sexual abuse linked to his time as a priest in Nunavut.
The Canadian Press