International: Ukraine’s Vatican envoy suggests papal visit may be imminent

Rome, Aug 7 : The Ukrainian ambassador to the Vatican suggested that Pope Francis might soon visit the war-torn country.

Ukraine has been waiting for the head of the Catholic Church since Russian launched its ongoing war on February 24, Andrii Yurash said in a tweet following an audience with the Pope, adding they would be happy to “welcome him before his trip to Kazakhstan”, dpa news agency reported.

The Pope is planning a three-day trip to Kazakhstan on September 13.

The Vatican did not make public any details of the conversation with Yurash, but only confirmed the meeting on Saturday.

The Ambassador, on the other hand, reported that Francis had underlined his closeness to the Ukrainian people and expressed the willingness to show this in a visit.

Since the war began, Pope Francis has said several times that he would like to visit Ukraine to promote peace.

However, he has been plagued by a knee injury for some time that has often forced him to use a wheelchair, so it seems unlikely he would make a long train journey to Kiev, for example.

Flights are still impossible to the capital of Ukraine.

On returning from a recent trip to Canada, the Pope said while he still wanted to travel, trips might have to be planned on a slightly smaller scale in the future.


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