Pope Francis said on Tuesday declared his intention to meet with the Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss the invasion of Ukraine and seek ways to end the hostility.
In an interview with Italy’s Corriere Della Sera newspaper, the Pope said he had asked for a meeting with the Russian leader in Moscow in a bid to end the war in Ukraine but had not received a reply.
Pope Francis, who visited the Russian embassy in Italy when the war started, said about three weeks into the conflict, he asked the Vatican’s top diplomat to send a message to Putin.
He said: “The 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.
READ ALSO: Russian forces strike important Ukrainian Port City of Odesa in renewed assaults
“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? Twenty-five years ago in Rwanda we lived through the same thing.”
The 85-year-old Pope had not specifically mentioned Russia or Putin publicly since the start of the conflict on February 24, but has left little doubt which side he has criticised whenever he spoke, often using terms such as unjustified aggression and invasion and lamenting atrocities against civilians.
Join the conversation
Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism
Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.
As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.
If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.
Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.
FEATURE…Missing Rig Workers: Tragedy, Injustice and the Depthwize cabal
The serene landscape of Ovhor in Delta State bore witness to a disaster that shook the nation’s conscience. The capsize...
FEATURE… In the shadow of kidnappers: The story of Nigeria’s albatross
For decades, Nigeria has been grappling with a problem that has threatened the safety and stability of its people: kidnapping....
FEATURE: The falling standard of education in Nigeria today: Whose Fault?
Over the years, education has proven to be the fulcrum facilitating national development in any state. Through education, knowledge is...
INVESTIGATION: Failed multi-million naira constituency water projects litter Sokoto communities
Many rural communities in Sokoto State are at the risk of an outbreak of diarrhea and other diseases due to...
FEATURE: Ebonyi residents lament bad roads despite multi-million naira allocation
‘The road has been this way for a long time. It is hard to access with vehicles and on foot...