“War is always a defeat!”: Pope calls for an end of violence in Israel and Gaza  

Pope Francis joined world leaders in calling for an end to the recent exchange of bloody attacks following the devastating onslaught by militant group Hamas in Israel during the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah on October 7, killing at least 250 people and abducted dozens more in a single day.

As he asked for prayers in his address after the Angelus prayer on Sunday, October 9, the Holy Father emphasized that violence is never an answer to peace.

“Please stop the attacks and the weapons… and understand that terrorism and war do not lead to any solution, but only to the death and suffering of so many innocent people. War is always a defeat! Every war is a defeat! Let us pray for peace in Israel and Palestine” he said.

The Pope also expressed solidarity to the families of the victims as he watches the situation “with apprehension and pain”.

Meanwhile, the head of the Catholic Church in Israel, Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa asked for the international community and religious leaders worldwide to help with de-escalation of the conflict “to guarantee the fundamental rights of people in the region.”

“The continuing bloodshed and declarations of war remind us once again of the urgent need to find a lasting and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in this land, which is called to be a land of justice, peace and reconciliation among peoples. We ask God to inspire world leaders in their intervention for the implementation of peace and concord so that Jerusalem may be a house of prayer for all peoples,” the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem wrote in a statement.

According to news reports, the recent Hamas-orchestrated attacks was the worst security situation Israel has experienced in exactly 50 years since the Yom Kippur War when an Arab coalition headed by Syria and Egypt started to attack Israel on October 6, 1973. (Lem Leal Santiago/RCAM-AOC | Photo from Vatican News)


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