Shameful capitulation Pope Francis slams Ukraine invasion after visit to Russian embassy

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He wrote separate tweets on Friday in English and Russian denouncing threats of war as “shameful capitulation” and a “stinging defeat before the forces of evil”. Before this statement was posted he visited the Russian embassy to express “great concern” about the humanitarian impact of the invasion on the people of Ukraine.

The papal tweet read: “Every war leaves our world worse than it was before.

“War is a failure of politics and of humanity, a shameful capitulation, a stinging defeat before the forces of evil.”

Earlier on Friday, the Pope paid a visit to the Russian embassy in an “unprecedented departure from diplomatic protocol”, according to the Daily Mail.

Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said the Pope spent over half an hour at the embassy but would not divulge any details of the conversation.

Ambassador Aleksandr Avdeyev told the RIA Novosti news agency that the Pope “called for the protection of children, the protection of the sick and suffering, and the protection of people”.

The Pope’s visit to the embassy to discuss the ongoing conflict is believed to be the first of its kind in living memory, as ambassadors are generally summoned to go to the Pope instead.

He has proclaimed next Wednesday March 2, or Ash Wednesday, as a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Ukraine.

However Pope Francis has not explicitly called out Russia potentially to avoid antagonising the Russian Orthodox Church, says EuroNews.

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin said earlier this week: “There is still time for goodwill, there is still room for negotiation, there is still room for the exercise of a wisdom that prevents the prevalence of partisan interests, protects the legitimate aspirations of each and saves the world from the madness and horror of war”.

The 85-year-old Pope has recently had to cancel upcoming commitments due to a flareup of knee pain.

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He has been suffering from sciatica nerve pain for some time that causes him to walk with a limp.

Putin ordered his forces into Ukraine early Thursday morning after a televised speech announcing “special military action”.

Russian armies have launched attacks via land, sea and air, with airstrikes being launched against the capital Kyiv in the early hours of Friday morning.

There are fears that Putin plans to seize control of the city.

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