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Pope Francis encourages reconciliation on Bosnia trip

Pope Francis urged Bosnia's Muslim, Orthodox and Catholic communities to work together. Credit: REUTERS/Stringer

Pope Francis has urged Bosnia's Muslim, Orthodox and Catholic communities to work together for a peaceful future, as he made a one-day visit to the capital Sarajevo.

A general view of the stadium before Pope Francis is celebrating a Holy Mass in Sarajevo. Credit: REUTERS/Stringer

The Pope hopes to encourage reconciliation, following the devastating Balkans war of the 1990s.

Children welcome Pope Francis as he arrives for a one-day visit at the airport in Sarajevo. Credit: REUTERS/Stringer

Pope Francis was speaking at a joint news conference with the Serb chairman of Bosnia's three-member presidency, Mladen Ivanic.

Pope meets Castro ahead of Cuba visit

Pope Francis has met with Cuban President Raul Castro today, ahead of his planned visit to the island nation later this year.

Pope Francis has met with Cuban President Raul Castro Credit: REUTERS/Gregorio

The pope granted Castro a rare Sunday audience at the Vatican as the Cuban President passed through Rome on his way back from Moscow.

Although the issues discussed by the Pope and Castro during their meeting were not disclosed the pontiff could be heard telling his visitor there was a "need to work together to fight poverty around the world" during a subsequent photo call.


Turkey recalls Vatican ambassador over Pope's Armenian 'genocide' comments

Turkey has recalled its ambassador to the Vatican following controversial remarks from Pope Francis during a Mass to mark the 100th anniversary of the Armenians massacre.

During the service, the Pope described the massacre of as many as 1.5 million Armenians as "the first genocide of the 20th century".

Turkey has long refused to call the event a genocide and has insisted that the toll has been inflated, and that those killed were victims of civil war and unrest.

Pope prays for an end to the persecution of Christians

Pope Francis used his Easter Sunday address to pray for an end to the persecution of Christians, commemorating the students massacred in Kenya.

Pope Francis waves at the end of the Easter mass in St. Peter's Square. Credit: REUTERS/Max Rossi

The Pope delivered a mostly sombre "Urbi et Orbi" message: "We ask Jesus, the victor over death, to lighten the sufferings of our many brothers and sisters who are persecuted for his name, and of all those who suffer injustice as a result of ongoing conflicts and violence - and there are many."

Crowds gathered at the Vatican despite the rain. Credit: REUTERS/Max Rossi

The pope spoke as churches in Kenya, where al Shabaab gunmen massacred nearly 150 people, turned to armed guards to protect their congregations.

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