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Pope Francis Calls For Peace Amid 'Easter Of War'

MILAN - Pope Francis on Sunday said the world is making an 'Easter of war', and called for peace in Ukraine, which he said has been dragged into a 'cruel and senseless war'.

'We have seen all too much blood, all too much violence. Our hearts, too, have been filled with fear and anguish', the Pope said while delivery his annual 'Urbi et Orbi' Easter blessing, adding 'our eyes, too, are incredulous on this Easter of war'.

'May there be peace for war - torn Ukraine, so sorely tried by the violence and destruction of the cruel and senseless war into which it was dragged. In this terrible night of suffering and death, may a new dawn of hope soon appear! Let there be a decision for peace. May there be an end to the flexing of muscles while people are suffering', Pope Francis said from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica after Easter Mass.

Around 100,000 people attended the Pope's Easter Mass in St.Peter's Square and nearby areas, according to the Vatican's press office.

Among them were several Ukrainian politicians, including Ivan Fedorv, the elected mayor of the occupied Ukrainian city of Melitopol who was detained by Russian forces last month and accused of terrorism offenses.

'I hold in my heart all the many Ukrainian victims, the millions of refugees and internally displaced persons, the divided families, the elderly left to themselves, the lives broken and the cities razed to the ground. I see the faces of the orphaned children fleeing from the war', Pope Francis continued.

The Pope also highlighted acts of charity amid the 'pain of war', such as 'the open doors of all those families and communities that are welcoming migrants and refugees throughout Europe'.



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