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Pope Francis pauses during his general audience at the Vatican yesterday (CNS photo/Vatican Media via Reuters)

Pope Francis yesterday condemned an attack on a Congolese village that led to the deaths of seven people, including a religious sister, and renewed calls for peace in “martyred Ukraine”. Source: NCR Online.

Before concluding his weekly general audience yesterday, the Pope said he was “horrified” by the attack which continues “to stain the Democratic Republic of Congo with blood”.

“I express my firm condemnation for the unacceptable assault that took place in recent days in Maboya, North Kivu province, where unarmed people, including a religious woman involved in health care, were killed,” the Pope said.

“We pray for the victims and their families, as well as for the Christian community and the inhabitants of that region who have been exhausted by violence for too long,” he said.

According to Fides, the news agency of the Dicastery for Evangelisation, the attack occurred on October 19 when militants looted and burned several homes before destroying a health centre run by the Butembo-Beni Diocese.

Several villagers, Fides reported, said the attackers were members of the Allied Democratic Forces, a Ugandan militant group allied with the so-called Islamic State.

Sr Marie-Sylvie Kavuke Vakatsuraki, a member of the Little Sisters of the Presentation of Our Lady in the Temple, who served as a doctor, and one of her patients were killed after militants set fire to the health centre.

Francis also renewed his call for peace in “martyred Ukraine,” where Russia’s ongoing war entered its eighth month. According to the Associated Press, Ukrainian authorities have called on its citizens to not return home as Russia continued its attacks on the country’s energy infrastructure.


Pope denounces attack in Congo, renews call for peace in Ukraine (By Junno Arocho Esteves, CNS via NCR Online)