The United Nations has asked the Vatican to provide details of thousands of cases of child abuse committed by members of the Catholic clergy.
The request by the committee, which governs the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child, comes six months ahead of Vatican representatives appearing before the UN body.
The Holy See has been asked to answer a range of questions, many of them linked to the epidemic of child sex abuse within the Church, the BBC reports.
The request for details of all abuse committed by priests, nuns and brothers over several years is accompanied by queries about support for victims and any incidents where complainants were silenced.
Shortly after becoming its leader earlier this year, Pope Francis said that cracking down on sex abuse was vital for the Church's credibility.