Pope Francis, in his Sunday prayer, reflected on the current fighting on the Artsakh-Azerbaijan line of contact, and condemned the targeting of churches during the conflict, the Vatican News reported.
Last week, Azerbaijani forces bombed the Holy Savior—Ghazanchetsots—Cathedral in Shushi causing structural damage. During a second bombing of the religious site, two Russian journalist were injured.
Pope Francis praised the humanitarian ceasefire agreement reached early Saturday morning local time.
“Even though the truce appears very fragile, I encourage its continuation and express my sympathy for the loss of lives, for the suffering, and for the destruction of homes and places of worship,” Pope Francis said, later urging prayers for the victims of the recent fighting.
His Holiness Karekin II, Catholicos of All Armenians, was in the Vatican visiting the Pope when Azerbaijan began its aggressive military attack on the entire Artsakh-Azerbaijan border, supported by Turkey and its backed jihadist fighters.
“The pope expressed his concern and his pain,” Karekin II told ACI Stampa at the time. “I asked my beloved brother Francis to raise his voice so that justice and peace are restored.”