Caritas Ukraine humanitarian aid warehouse obliterated

civilian targets

Pope Francis has resolutely condemned the use of “conventional weapons” against civilian targets.

In a message sent to Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences Cardinal Peter Turkson, the condemnation comes after a Russian drone attack in Lviv, Ukraine, obliterated a Caritas-Spes-owned warehouse containing humanitarian aid.

The secretary general of Caritas Internationalis, Alistair Dutton, said the Russian attack destroyed more than 330 tons of humanitarian aid for Ukrainians.

“The mission’s employees were unharmed,” the head of Caritas-Spes Ukraine, Father Vyacheslav Grynevych, said “but the warehouse with everything inside burned to the ground, including food, hygiene kits, generators and clothes.”

Caritas Poland had just sent aid packages to support 600 families in Ukraine. The charity has pledged additional support for families in need.

This incident highlights a disturbing trend, as humanitarian warehouses have increasingly become targets for Russian forces in their ongoing conflict with Ukraine.

In his September 19th message, the Pope expressed deep concern about the ethical problems of using conventional weapons in contemporary warfare. He emphasised that such weapons, which should be utilised only for defensive purposes, must never be directed towards civilian targets.

“It is my hope that sustained reflection on this issue will lead to a consensus that such weapons, with their immense destructive power, will not be employed in a way that foreseeably causes ‘superfluous injury or unnecessary suffering,’ to use the words of the St Petersburg Declaration,” Francis said.

Cardinal Krajewski in Lviv

The Dicastery for the Service of Charity announced in a September 20 press release that Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, the papal almoner, is in Ukraine this week.

He is there to open the House of Refuge “in the name of Pope Francis, as a sign of support and closeness to the many people who were forced to flee because of the conflict, bringing the apostolic blessing.”

The new house of refuge is for displaced mothers and children.

The Vatican partially financed and built the shelter during the conflict with Russia.



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