The Vatican, headed by Pope Francis, is willing to mediate between Russia and Ukraine to achieve peace and put an end to the conflict initiated by the Russian invasion of Ukrainian territory on February 24.
The proposal for pope mediation arose from a meeting between the Supreme Pontiff and French President Emmanuel Macron, who asked the church leader to call Russian President Vladimir Putin as well as Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill. and US President Joe Biden to promote the peace process in Ukraine.
(Also read: Ukraine asks for 38,000 million dollars to cover fiscal deficit due to the war)
In an interview with the magazine Le Point After his two-day visit to Italy and the Vatican, Frenchman Macron commented on the details of his meeting with Pope Francis, with whom he discussed the war in Ukraine.
“I have encouraged Pope Francis to call Vladimir Putin and Patriarch Kirill, but also Joe Biden. We need the United States to sit at the table to favor the peace process in Ukraine“, Macron said in the interview.
In this sense, the pope spoke this week making new calls for lasting peace in Ukraine.
(You may be interested: What is a ‘dirty bomb’, a weapon that causes tension between Russia and Ukraine?)
“Let us not forget to pray, to continue praying for the tormented Ukraine. May the Lord protect that people and guide us all along the path of lasting peace,” the pontiff said during Wednesday’s general audience in St. Pedro, in a new call to end the conflict.
This Tuesday, the pontiff also lambasted the threat of the nuclear weapon during an act at the Colosseum in Rome and launched a new request for peace in the face of this “so dramatic moment” for the world due to the war in Europe.
“Let us not be infected by the perverse logic of war,” the pope said at the closing ceremony of the interreligious forum for peace organized by the Italian Catholic organization of Sant’Egidio before more than two thousand people gathered in front of the famous Roman monument .
Wars have not stopped bloodying and impoverishing the Earth
“Today, in effect, what was feared and what we never wanted to hear is happening: that is, the use of atomic weapons, which guiltily continued to be produced and tested after Hiroshima and Nagasaki, is now openly a threat,” he lamented. the Argentine pontiff.
(Also: Young Ukrainian tells that she was tortured in Russia for six months)
“This year our prayer has become a cry, because today peace is seriously violated, wounded, trampled. And in Europe, that is, in the continent that in the last century has known the tragedies of two world wars,” he said.
“Unfortunately wars have not stopped bloodying and impoverishing the Earth, but this moment we live in is particularly dramatic,” continued the sovereign pontiff who has not stopped multiplying his appeals for peace.
Russia would accept mediation
Once the pope’s new calls for peace and the possibility of the Vatican mediating to end the war were known, the spokesman for the Russian Presidency, Dmitri Peskov, assured that are “willing to discuss all this (the situation in
Ukraine) with the Americans, with the French and with the pontiff.”
“If this really goes in the direction of efforts to find possible solutions, it can be assessed positively,” Peskov stressed during his daily telephone press conference.
However, the spokesman criticized that so far no one has proposed to call the Ukrainian president, Volodimir Zelensky, to clarify “the legal basis that prohibits any type of negotiation with the Russian side.”
(Keep reading: The war in Ukraine: a current threat to the unity of the European Union?)
“I repeat again: Russia is open to all contacts. But we must start from the basis that Ukraine has prohibited the continuation of negotiations,” he insisted.
Peskov was referring to the recent Zalensky decree that put into effect the decision of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine on the impossibility of holding negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
(You can read: Leaving Ukraine without electricity: Why did Russia implement this strategy?)
On the possibility of Moscow accepting the dialogue, the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, told the Italian media that “it is something positive.”
“That there is an opening of this type is obviously a generic opening that will then have to be carried out taking into account all aspects, but that there is a willingness to speak seems to me a sign,” explained the “number two” of the Vatican.
*With information from AFP and EFE
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