Zelenskyy welcomes Vatican mediation in war

Vatican's role mediating welcomed

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has welcomed the Vatican’s role in mediating the Russia-Ukraine conflict that has impacted the Eastern European country for more than four weeks.

“The mediating role of the Holy See in ending human suffering would be appreciated,” President Zelenskyy wrote, adding that he thanked the pope “for the prayers for Ukraine and peace.”

Pope Francis telephoned President Zelenskyy before the president addressed the Italian parliament via video link on March 22.

Andrii Yurash, Ukrainian ambassador to the Holy See, tweeted that the conversation between the pope and president was “very promising.”

The ambassador reported the pope was “praying and doing everything possible” to help end the war. The pope was again invited to visit the country.

From his Twitter account, @ZelenskyyUa, the president said he told the pope about “the difficult humanitarian situation and the blocking of rescue corridors by Russian troops.”

The president said that Pope Francis told him: “I understand that you desire peace. I understand that you must defend yourselves, soldiers and civilians defend their country, each one defends.”

“And I responded,” Zelenskyy recalled, that “our people have become the army, [they became] the army when they saw the evil their enemy does, what devastation it has left”.  Zelenskyy reiterated that the Vatican’s role mediating the conflict was welcomed.

Zelenskyy said that in the conflict with Russia, at least 117 children have been killed. Thousands have also been wounded, tens of thousands of families destroyed and millions of homes abandoned.

“And all of this started from one person,” he said.

He said Ukraine is the gateway into Europe for the Russian military. Europe “has to stop just one person so that millions may survive.”

This is the second time since the Russian conflict began that the Pope and Zelenskyy have spoken by phone. The first time was on February 26, two days after after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine launched by President Vladimir Putin.


Catholic News Agency

America Magazine


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