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Ukraine assures that Pope Francis will visit kyiv before September 13


Pope Francis leaves after the weekly general audience at the Vatican, August 3, 2022. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

The Pope Francisco visit Kyiv before traveling to Kazakhstan on September 13assured EFE today the ambassador of Ukraine before the Holy See, Andri Yurashafter holding a meeting with the pontiff in the Vatican.

The Holy See has not yet confirmed this possibility.

“Ukraine for many years, and especially since the beginning of the war, has been waiting for the Pope and will be happy to greet him before his trip to Kazakhstan,” the diplomat posted on his Twitter profile, along with some photos of the meeting.

Ukraine assures that Pope Francis will visit kyiv before September 13
File Image: Pope Francis and Ukraine’s Ambassador to the Vatican Andriy Yurash pose during a private audience at the Vatican, April 7, 2022. Vatican Media/Handout via REUTERS

Francis has confirmed an apostolic trip to Kazakhstan from September 13 to 15 to participate in the VIII World Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions.

During the meeting, he revealed, Francis told him: “I want to express my closeness with my visit” to Ukraine.

Ukraine assures that Pope Francis will visit kyiv before September 13
Clergy members hold up a Ukrainian flag as Pope Francis celebrates his weekly general audience at the Vatican, August 3, 2022. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

At the press conference on the papal plane back from Canada, on July 30, Francis had reiterated his willingness to travel to kyiv: “We’ll see what I find when I get home,” he said then, referring to the preparations for Vatican diplomacy for this possible trip.

Yesterday, Friday, the pontiff received in audience the new head of Foreign Affairs of the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Antonij di Volokolamsk, representative of Patriarch Kirill, who has always justified and encouraged the invasion of Ukraine.

Ukraine assures that Pope Francis will visit kyiv before September 13
Pope Francis meets with the second most powerful leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, Bishop Anthony, ahead of a planned meeting next month with his Patriarch Kirill. Vatican Media/Handout via REUTERS

Francisco and Kirill took a step towards understanding on February 12, 2016, embracing in Havana, in the first meeting between the two leaders of these two churches in almost a millennium, since the Great Schism of the year 1054.

However, they have not hidden their differences in relation to the invasion of Ukraine and last March, in a videoconference, Francisco reproached him that wars are always unjust.

“Wars are always unjust because those who pay for them are the people of God. Our hearts cannot help crying before children, murdered women, before all the victims of war. War is never the way”, the Pope argued before the patriarch, known supporter of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Ukraine assures that Pope Francis will visit kyiv before September 13
The Argentine pontiff has always been very concerned about the situation in Ukraine, invaded by Russia since February 24, and has spared no calls for peace to be negotiated and offers of mediation to end the conflict. REUTERS/Carlos Osorio

Francis, with some knee problems that often force him to use a wheelchair, has decided to confirm this apostolic trip to Kazakhstan.

Both religious leaders could coincide in this event, according to some specialized media, although this possibility has not yet been confirmed by the Vatican or by Moscow.

In the official agenda of the pontiff in Kazakhstan, a space has been reserved at noon on September 14 for “private meetings with some religious leaders”, without providing further details.

(with information from EFE)

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