Pope Francis has called for a ceasefire in the Holy Land. Addressing the faithful gathered in St Peter’s Square for his Sunday Angelus, the Holy Father invited everyone to “continue to pray … for the serious situation in Palestine and Israel”. In particular, he asked that humanitarian aid be allowed to enter Gaza and that all hostages be freed.
The situation in Gaza has intensified over the last few days. Over 7,200 people are confirmed dead since 7 October, after Hamas carried out a deadly attack on Israel, which responded with bombardments and a ground invasion.
The Holy Father quoted Father Ibrahim Faltas, the Egyptian Franciscan vicar of the Custody of the Holy Land in Jerusalem, who recently spoke on the Italian television programme A Sua Immagine (In his image). I listened to him and he said “cease fire, cease fire”, explained the Pontiff.
“We too, like Father Ibrahim, say cease fire”, said the Pope, adding “stop, brothers and sisters: war is always a defeat—always, always!”
By Francesca Merlo | VaticanNews