Pope Francis says he wants to go to Moscow to meet Vladimir Putin over Ukraine crisis - Report

Edited By: Sayan Ghosh
New Delhi, India Updated: May 03, 2022, 03:09 PM(IST)

Pope Francis speaks in the “Ambassadors' Chamber” of the Grand Master’s Palace in Valletta, Malta Photograph:( Reuters )

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The pope also criticized Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church for supporting Russia’s invasion in Ukraine and said that he “cannot become Putin’s altar boy”, according to the report.

An interview published on Tuesday said that Pope Francis has been asking for a meeting with Russian president Vladimir Putin in a bid to end the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. However, the interview published in Italy’s Corriere Della Sera said that he has not received any reply from Moscow.

The pope also criticized Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church for supporting Russia’s invasion in Ukraine and said that he “cannot become Putin’s altar boy”, according to the report.

Earlier, the pope cancelled a meeting with Patriarch Kirill set in June due to his pro-war views.

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The interview said that the pope’s message was “that I was willing to go to Moscow. Certainly, it was necessary for the Kremlin leader to allow an opening. We have not yet received a response and we are still insisting.”

 “I fear that Putin cannot, and does not, want to have this meeting at this time. But how can you not stop so much brutality?” he added.

Pope Francis visited the Russian embassy towards the beginning of the conflict but this time, he has sent a clear message to Moscow about a possible communication regarding the crisis.

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The Russia invasion of Ukraine entered its third month, and a senior United States official has claimed that the Russian forces are now looking to annex the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in Ukraine.

The Luhansk region is already under attack and governor Serhiy Haidai confirmed that Russian forces have started shelling parts of the cities which are still under Ukrainian control, according to AFP.

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