Pope says Ukraine, Russia trip not currently possible due to knee pain

In a new interview, Pope Francis laid to rest rumours that a papal visit to Kyiv could happen before his visit to Kazakhstan next week, saying he has been forbidden by doctors from travelling before that due to his ongoing knee troubles.

Speaking to CNN Portugal, the pope said he has spoken to both Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Russian President Vladimir Putin, and that dialogue is key.

“They both visited me here. Not now, before (the war). And I always believe that by having a dialogue, we advance. You know who doesn’t know how to talk? Animals. They are pure instinct. Instead, dialogue is letting go of instinct and listening. Dialogue is difficult,” he said.

Asked whether he still intends to visit Kyiv, Francis said a papal visit to the Ukrainian capital is “up in the air”.

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