May arms fall silent says pope in Iraq

External interests that don't care about population must cease

(ANSA) - BAGHDAD, MAR 5 - Pope Francis called for arms to fall silent and the builders of peace to be heeded in his first speech on his historic visit to Iraq, the first by any pontiff, on Friday.
    Addressing government officials, the diplomatic corps and civilian authorities in the Mideast country, Francis said "Let arms fall silent! May their spread be limited, here and everywhere! May factional interests cease, those external interests that don't care about the local population.
    "May the builders, the artisans of peace be heeded! Give a voice to the little ones, the poor, the simple people, who want to live, work and pray in peace.
    "Enough of violence, extremism, factions, intolerance!" The pope also said that the international community must provide help "without imposing ideologies". (ANSA).


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