Flash flood: pope 'close' to victims

Francis voices 'spiritual closeness'

(ANSA) - Vatican City, August 22 - Pope Francis on Wednesday said he was "close" to the 10 victims of a flash flood that hit hikers in a Calabrian river canyon and also to their families.
    Speaking at his weekly general audience, Francis said "in greeting the Italian-language pilgrims, my thoughts go to the tragedy, which occurred in the past days in Calabria near the Raganello River, where hikers from various Italian regions lost their lives".
    "While I entrust to the merciful goodness of God those who dramatically died, I express my spiritual closeness to their families, and also to the (11) injured," the pontiff said.