In the wake of intensified attacks in Syria, Pope Francis called for an immediate cease-fire – even if temporary – so that civilians, especially children, could be rescued from the ruins.
Emphasising that his thoughts and prayers are with “all victims of the inhumane conflict in Syria,” the pope said it was with “a sense of urgency that I renew my appeal, imploring – with all my strength – those responsible so that an immediate cease-fire be arranged.”
He asked the cease-fire be “implemented and respected at least for the time needed to allow for the evacuation of civilians, most of all children, who are still trapped under fierce bombings.”
The pope made his appeal on 12th October at the end of his weekly general audience in St Peter’s Square. It came after a wave of intense violence as Russian airstrikes, supported by the Syrian government, hit Aleppo and rockets launched by rebels rained on Dara in the South.
At least six people were killed in the South and 25 people reportedly killed in Aleppo on 11th October, although the number of casualties may rise as rescuers continue to comb through the rubble.
Picture: A man reacts on the rubble of destroyed buildings on 11th October after losing relatives to an airstrike in Aleppo, Syria. In the wake of intensified attacks in Syria, Pope Francis called for an immediate cease-fire, even if temporary, so that civilians, especially children, could be rescued from the ruins. (CNS photo/Abdalrhman Ismail, Reuters).