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TOPIC: pope francis

In The News

North Korean Missiles Over Japan, Zelensky To Never Negotiate With Putin, Ian Toll Tops 100

👋 Shlamaloukh!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where North Korea reportedly fires a missile over Japan for the first time in five years, Ukrainian President Zelensky signs a decree vowing to never negotiate with Russia while Putin is in power, and a lottery win raises eyebrows in the Philippines. Meanwhile, Argentine daily Clarin looks at how the translation of a Bible in an indigenous language in Chile has sparked a debate over the links between language, colonialism and cultural imposition.

[*Assyrian, Syria]

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What Exactly Does Pope Francis Think About The War In Ukraine?

Seven months after Russia’s invasion, the Pope finally called on Vladimir Putin directly to stop the war. But just days earlier, Francis had offered an elaborate theory on the causes of the war, which he blamed on competing “imperialisms” of Russia and the West, and the need to have wars to sell weapons.

-Analysis-

Pope Francis has not been particularly popular in Ukraine since the war began in February. Unlike other Western leaders, the pope didn’t condemn Vladimir Putin in the days and weeks after the invasion, largely limiting his remarks about the war to prayers for the victims and universal calls for peace.

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A Ukrainian colleague was furious that Francis wasn’t calling Putin out for his invasion. Having covered the Vatican for more than a decade in my prior job, I tried to explain that papal diplomacy tends not to point fingers or name names, partly in their hope of leaving church channels open for possible future negotiations.

Well, on Sunday, Francis finally pointed his finger at Putin, in what was perhaps his strongest call to date to stop the war. “My appeal goes above all to the president of the Russian Federation, begging him to stop this spiral of violence and death, even out of love for his own people,” the pope said.

In the same breath, he also urged Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to be open to negotiations. The pope also warned against the rising threat of the use of nuclear weapons. This is what popes do in times of war: They call for peace and try to save lives, hoping the message seeps into the ears and hearts of political leaders and public opinion.

Still, there are other messages that Francis has been spreading about the war that are not so obvious.

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Mass Burial Site Discovered After Liberation Of Izium, 440 Feared Killed

Andriy Yermak, the Head of the Office of the Ukrainian President, said on Twitter that a mass burial of soldiers of the Ukrainian Armed Forces had been discovered near the liberated town of Izyum, in the Kharkiv region.

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According to reports, as many as 440 bodies are thought to have been buried at the site.

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Zelensky Aims For "Victory" In Independence Day Speech

Ukraine is celebrating its Independence Day. Thirty one years ago, without a single shot being fired, the Soviet Union finally broke up and all of its republics set out to build their statehood.

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The collapse of such a huge totalitarian system unfolded so peacefully that for many of the now independent states, it seemed as if from then on there would be only peace and friendship among neighbors.

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In The News
Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet, McKenna Johnson and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Russia Cuts Gas To Europe, Myanmar Protests, SpaceX Rival

👋 Yokwe!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Europe braces for Russia turning off gas, an architect of Northern Ireland peace deal dies and a European rival to SpaceX is taking shape. Meanwhile, we look at what makes the Ukrainian port city of Odessa such a strategic and symbolic target for Vladimir Putin.

[*Marshallese, Marshall Islands]

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In The News
Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet, McKenna Johnson and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Russia Confirms Odessa Attack, Pope’s Penance Pilgrimage, Hurdles World Record

👋 Wĩmwega!*

Welcome to Monday, where Russia denies then admits to shelling the port of Odessa, Myanmar’s military executes four democracy activists and the pope arrives in Canada for a historic “pilgrimage of penance.” Meanwhile, Global Press Journal looks at Sri Lanka’s ban on agrochemicals and how it has affected the country’s agriculture.

[*Kikuyu, Kenya]

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In The News
Joel Silvestri, McKenna Johnson, Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet and Anne-Sophie Goninet

Lysychansk Falls, Copenhagen Mall Shooting, Formula One Scare

👋 Olá!*

Welcome to Monday, where most of Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region is now under Russian control, three die in a Copenhagen mall shooting, and botanists make a big surprise discovery. Meanwhile, we focus on John Lee, who embodies the change afoot in Hong Kong as it marks 25 years since the UK handover.

[*Portuguese]

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In The News
Anna Akage, Lisa Berdet, and Emma Albright

Macron, Draghi To Meet Zelensky — But What About Scholz?

For Europe's top leaders, travel details have not been confirmed ahead of what could be a momentous visit to Kyiv. But Ukrainian President Zelensky also had some frank words for German Chancellor Olaf Scholz

There are conflicting reports about the precise day and hour, but it appears certain that two of Europe’s key leaders, French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, are heading soon to Kyiv for the first time since Russia’s invasion.

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But the travel plans also raise the question of whether German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will join the other two European leaders for what would be a show of unity and support for Kyiv and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky at a moment that Russian troops are gaining territory and some analysts say that Ukraine should be ready to negotiate a settlement.

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Ideas
Irene Caselli

How Italy’s New Draconian Bill On Surrogacy Twists The Meaning Of "Women's Dignity"

Italy’s right-wing politicians are trying to ban surrogacy, as the pope pushes parents to have children and feminists are divided on the issue. On such a complicated issue, hard thinking and nuance have been in short supply.

-Essay-

After almost two decades away from Italy, I ended up moving back just after I found out I was pregnant in 2018.

We lived in a stone house among olive trees in the Umbrian countryside, just off a beautiful medieval borgo called Montecastello di Vibio.

Even if I had tried, I could not have picked a better place for my pregnancy to be celebrated — and monitored publicly. With its aging dwellers slowly fading and younger families moving to the big cities, Montecastello was a perfect illustration of Italy’s falling fertility rates.

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In The News
Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet, Anne-Sophie Goninet and Bertrand Hauger

Moscow-Washington War Of Words, Kim Jong-un’s Nuclear Threat, World’s Oldest Person Dies

👋 Kia ora!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where there’s an escalation of rhetoric between Russia and Washington, Kim Jong-un issues a nuclear threat and the world’s oldest person dies at age 119. Meanwhile, news website Livy Bereg looks at past examples of economic recoveries in countries that were destroyed by war, to see what lessons could be drawn for Ukraine.

[*Maori]

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Ideas
Luigi Manconi

Why Pope Francis Is Right To Avoid Ukraine War Politics

The Pope is being urged to "go to Kyiv," and name Putin as the aggressor in the war in Ukraine. If he did so, the pontiff would renounce his own religious charisma, and ultimately sap him of his unique role and power as the ultimate messenger of peace.

-OpEd-

ROME — Precisely because I am in favor of the Ukrainian popular resistance and of all initiatives in its support, I am equally in favor of Pope Francis' unmitigated stance for pacifism.

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The origin of the pontiff's choice should always reside in the words that constitute the foundation of the relationship between Christians and history: Be in the world, but not of the world (John 15:18-19). Everything is contained in that guidance.

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Ideas
Ricardo Roa

If The Pope Won't Condemn Putin, He'll Wind Up On The Wrong Side Of History

Pope Francis must make a hard choice that supersedes his eagerness to heal the rift between Catholicism and Orthodoxy, which is diluting his already tepid postures on the Russian war in Ukraine.

-OpEd-

BUENOS AIRES — It is difficult to find an explanation for the Pope's choice for discretion in the face of the massacre in Ukraine. A month into the invasion, as the deaths and destruction mount, Pope Francis has yet to condemn Russia or its president, Vladimir Putin. As far as our Jorge Bergoglio, the former archbishop of Buenos Aires, is concerned, they are not at fault. Few in the world would agree; in fact he is swimming against the tide.

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